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Provincial Geographies of India 

General Editor 
Sir T. H. HOLLAND, K.C.LE., D.Sc, F.R.S. 





ilonHou: FETTER LANE, E.G. 

C. F. CLAY, Manager 

aFDinbiirgl) : loo, PRINCES STREET 

Brrlin: A. ASHER AND CO. 

ILcipjig: F. A. BROCKHAUS 

^m gotk: G. P. PUTNAM'S SONS 

Bombaa anS Calcutta: MACMILLAN AND CO., Ltd. 

^1/ rights reserved 







Cambridge : 
at the University Press 





'^T^HE casual visitor to India, who limits his observations 
-*- of the country to the all-too-short cool season, is so 
impressed by the contrast between Indian life and that with 
which he has been previously acquainted that he seldom 
realises the great local diversity of language and ethnology. 
This local variety, however, receives expression even in the 
forms of administration ; for the success of the British rule 
in India is largely due to the fact that the early ad- 
ministrators adopted the local systems of government and 
moulded them gradually according to the lessons of ex- 
perience. And this was because the British occupation 
was that of a trading company of which the present 
Government of India is a lineal descendant — a fact too 
often apparently overlooked in the modern administration 
of the country. 

The recent enlargement of the functions of the Local 
Governments, and more complete management of local 
affairs, with the formation of Executive, and extension of 
the Legislative, Councils, all tend to direct more intensely 
the people's thoughts to the affairs of their own provinces. 
It is hoped that these Provincial Geographies will in some 
way reflect this growing tendency to develop special pro- 
vincial atmospheres, and with this object in view endeavours 


have been made to select as authors those who, besides 
having" an accurate and detailed knowledge of each area 
treated, are able to give a broad view of its features with 
a personal touch that is beyond the power of the mere 

Among the "provinces" the Madras Presidency has 
above all developed an individuality of its own — advanced 
in education through early missionary effort, free of frontier 
worries, comparatively homogeneous in ethnic composition, 
and sufficiently unknown to the Central Government to 
escape undue interference, its officials and its people are 
distinctly " Madrassi," and are rightly proud to be so. No 
geographical unit could more appropriately be selected to 
initiate this series, and everyone who knows the Senior Pre- 
sidency will recognise the pre-eminent fitness of Mr Edgar 
Thurston to give a true picture of South India. As 
Superintendent of the Madras Museum for 25 years, he 
sampled ever)' form of natural product in the south. As 
Superintendent for many years of the Ethnographic Survey, 
he travelled through every district and obtained an intimate 
acquaintance with the people, his numerous publications 
on Ethnography being summed up in his encyclopaedic 
work on the Castes and Tribes of Southern India. Old 
friends, whose number cannot be counted, will recognise 
Mr Thurston's touch throughout the book : no one else 
could so readily recall an appropriate story or legend to 
add to the human interest of nearly every place mentioned ; 
many of those whose interests are more human than geo- 
graphical will read the book mereh' because of the Author's 
personality. Nothing better could be said of it, and no 


better recommendation could be offered to those who have 
not had the privilege of knowing Mr Thurston personally. 

The Author has had the willing help of several friends, 
among whom might specially be mentioned Mr J. S. Gamble, 
CLE., F.R.S., who, as an old official of the Indian Forest 
Department, has dealt authoritatively with the chapter on 
the Flora and Forests. Mr E. B. Havell, who is well 
known by his charming books on Indian Art, has con- 
tributed the chapter on Architecture, a subject which he 
had an opportunity of specially studying when for many 
years he was Principal of the Madras School of Art, while 
Mr jGeorge Romill)-, who, as the representative for many 
years of the planters' community on the Legislative Council, 
has given the benefit of his personal knowledge of, and suc- 
cessful commercial experience with, the planting industries. 
For the shortcomings of the chapter on Geology I am 
mainly responsible. 

We are indebted to various friends, official and private, 
for permission to use photographs and maps, and the source 
of each illustration is acknowledged in the list. 

T. H. H. 

May 19 1 3. 





Area ; Boundaries ; Divisions .... i 


Mountains ..... 



Rivers ...... 



Islands . . . 



Seaports ; Maritime Trade 






Geology . . . . . 









Fauna . 



Flora ; Phoresis 



Economic Uses of I'alms 



Language ...... 



People — Race ; Religion 



Prehistoric Antiquities : Archaeology 



Architecture ..... 






Administration .... 



Communications — Roads ; Railways ; C 





Agriculture ; Crops .... 



Irrigation ...... 



Industries ...... 



Planting Industries 



Sea-fisheries ..... 



Industrial Arts ..... 



The Roll of Honour .... 



The Chief Towns and Villages 

List of Books ...... 











1 1. 



1 6. 

1 8. 



Map of the Madras Presidency, Coorg, and associated 

States and Laccadive and Maldive Islands 
Chinapatan rupee of Aurangzlb [British Museum] 

Toda mad or mand 

Toda buffaloes ....... 

Kodaikanal, general view ..... 

Cauvery Falls \Plioto. C. S. Middlemiss, Geol. Survey 

of Iiidid] 

Fish, Ostracion cormitus [Day, Fishes of India] . 
Sub-fossil coral reef, Pamban [Madras Museian BiiUeti)i 
The sea-front, Tuticorin ...... 

Dolphin's Nose, Vizagapatam .... 

Fishing nets, Cochin [L. K. Anantha Krishna Iyer] 

Rainfall map {^Statistical Atlas of Iudia~\ 

Chart of cyclonic storm [Eliot, Hand-book of Cyclonii. 

Storms ifi the Bay of Bengal] .... 
Chart of cyclonic storm [Jones, Types of Weather in 

Madras] ........ 

P'oliation of gneiss [Photo. C. S. Middlemiss, Geol. 

Snrz'ey of India] ...... 

Hillock of granitic gneiss [Photo. V. H. Smith, Geol. 

Survey of India] ...... 

The lake, Ootacamund ...... 

Nllgiri downs ........ 

Cuddapah limestone, Kolab river, showing honeycomb 

weathering [Photo. T. L. Walker, Geol. Survey of 

India] .......... 

Cretaceous fossils [Rec. Geol. Survey of India] . 
Beryl crystals [Photo. T. L. Walker, Geol. Survey of 

India] .......... 

Corundum crystal with shell of felspar [Photo. T. H. 

Holland, Geol. Suri^ey of India] .... 
Kolar gold-field ........ 


At end 
















24. Pariahs smelting "blooms" of iron [Imperial Institute 

Photo. T. H. Holland, Geol. Survey of India\ 

25. Manganese quarry, Kodur [Photo. L. L. Fermor, Geol. 

Sitr7'ty of Indi(i\ ...... 

26. Mica crystals, Inikurti quarry [PAoto. T. H. Holland 

Geo/. Sutvey of I)idia'\ ..... 

27. Bridge made of gneiss split by fire [Photo. C. S. Middle 

miss, Geo/. Survey of India] .... 

28. Parnallee meteorite [British Museum, Natural History] 

29. Elephant with baby 

30. Elephant keddah 

31. Gaur or "bison" ....... 

32. Fish, RJiinodon typicus [Madras Museum] . 

33. Leaf insect [ Max well- Lefroy, Indian Insect Life] 

34. Female white-ant [Guide, British Museum, Natural 

History] ........ 

35. Jungle Irulas collecting honey [Madras Government] 

36. Banyan avenue, Madras 

37. Tree ferns 

38. Forest scenery 

39. Bamboos on ghat road . 

40. Coconut plantation . 

41. Coir-picking, Malabar [Madras Government] 

42. Toddy-drawer ....... 

43. Map showing distribution of Dravidian languages 

[Grierson, Linguistic Survey of India] 

44. Jungle Paliyan [Madras Government] . 

45. Yanadis making fire by friction [Madras Government 

46. Madhva Brahman [Madras Government] 

47. PaliEolithic and neolithic implenients [Madras Museum 

48. Dolmens on the Nilgiris [Madras Government] . 

49. Kuruba dolmen-like graves [Madras Government] 

50. Pottery from excavations on the Nilgiris [Madras 

Museum] ........ 

51. Prognathous skulls [Madras Museum] . 

52. Relic caskets from the Bhattiprolu stupa [Rea, Arch 

Survey of India] ...... 

53. Slab from the inner rail, Amaravati [Burgess, Buddhist 

sttipas of Amaravati and faggayapeta] 

54. Bas-relief at Mahabalipuram . 

















55. Dharmaraja rath, Mahabalipuram [India Office] . 

56. Tanjore temple [India Office] . . . . . 

57. Tiruvalur pagoda [Ram Raz, Essays on the Atrhitcchwc 

of the Hi)iiii{s'\ ........ 

58. Srivilliputtur pagoda [Arch. Survey of India] 

59. Temple stambha, South Canara \^Arch. Survey of India] 

60. Architect, with elevation of temple drawn on wall 

\I'hoto. A. K. Coomaraswamy] . 

61. Portcullis money of Queen Elizabeth 

62. Fort St George, Madras 

63. Stringer Lawrence and Nawab Walajah [Banqueting 

Hall, Madras] . 

64. Fort wall, Seringapatam 

65. Nilgiri hill railway . 

66. Up-country railway-station 

67. Backwater and canal, Malabar 

68. Lake opening into the sea 

69. Ground-nut or pea-nut [Church, Food-grains of India] 
JO. Lifting water by means of a picota 

71. Periyar dam [Wilson, Irris^ation in Ittdia] 

72. Dowlaishwaram anient [Walsh, Engineering Works in 

the Goddvari delta] .... 

J^. Kistna anicut [Wilson, Irrigation in India] 

74. Weaving on hand-loom . 

75. Tobacco crop . 

76. Coffee bushes . 
yy. Tea estate 

78. Catamaran, Madras beach 

79. Chank shell {^Madras Museutn Bulletin] 

80. Painted cloth made at Kalahasti [Hawkes, Photographs 

of Madras Art-7vare] ...... 

81. Metal figure of Siva as Nataraja [Madras Museum] 

82. Elephant goads from the Tanjore palace [Hawkes] 

83. Lacquered table made at Nandyal [Hawkes] 

84. Pith model of the Tanjore temple [Hawkes] 

85. Lord Clive [Oriental Club] .... 

86. Abb^ Dubois [Madras Literary Society] 

87. Hill fort, Anantapur \_Arch. Survey of India"] 

88. Belur temple 

89. Hazara Ramaswaini temple, Hampi [India Office] 
















90. Go\ernment House and Banqueting Hall, Madras 

91. Chepauk palace, Madras ..... 

92. Statue of the Marquis Cornwallis .... 

93. Palace of Tirumala Xaik, Madura 

94. Colossal figure of the sacred bull on Chamundi hill 

95. Ootacamund, general view 

96. Statue of Dupleix, Pondicherry .... 

97. Carved pillars of portico, Srirangam temple [India 


98. Colossal stone bull, Tanjore temple 

99. Rock temple, Trichinopoly ..... 
100. Vellore fort ........ 



Figs. 3, 4, 5, 9, 10, 17, 18, 29, 30, 31, 36, ^7, 38, 39, 40, 42, 54, 62, 
64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 70, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 88, 90, 91, 93, 95, 96, 98, 99, 
100, are reproduced from photographs by Messrs Wiele and Klein, 
photographers, Madras. 

Figs. 23 and 94 are from photographs by Messrs Barton, Son and 
Co., photographers, Bangalore. 



The large tract of country dealt with in the present 
volunne includes: (a) the Madras Presidency, or Presidency 
of Fort St George, so named after the patron saint of 
England ; (/?) the States of Travancore and Cochin, and 
the smaller States of Pudukkottai, Banganapalle, and 
Sandur, which have political relations with the Government 
of Madras ; (c) the State of Mysore, and the small British 
Province of Kodagu or Coorg, which have direct political 
relations with the Government of India ; (d) the French 
Possessions, all of which, with the exception of Chander- 
nagore in Bengal, are situated in the south of the Peninsula. 

The title of Presidency, as applied to Madras, which 
has been called in disparagement the Benighted Presidency 
or the Cinderella of the Indian Provinces, and more happily 
Clive's Province, had its origin in the seventeenth century, 
when the Agent of the East India Company was raised to 
the rank of President, independent of Bantam in Java. 
The city of Madras is still known in official parlance as 
the Presidency, in contra-distinction to the outlying and 
up-country districts and stations, which are known as the 
mofussil (mufassal, provincial). 

The etymology of the name Madras has been the subject 
of much speculation. It has, for example, been connected 
with a legend concerning a fictitious fisherman named 

T. I 


Madarasen. The suggestion has been made that it is a 
corruption of Manda-rajya, meaning reahn of the stupid, 
or of the Portuguese Madre de Dios. A further suggestion 
is that it is derived from a Telugu ruler named Mandaradzu. 

Scale of Eng. Miles 




Fig. I. Madras Presidency, Coorg, and associated States. 

The firman from the Nayak or chief, from whom Mr Francis 
Day acquired permission, in 1639, to settle at Madras, and 
build a fort, refers to "our port of Madraspatam " (Madras 


city). In a seventeenth century print, Madirass is shown 
on the north of Fort St George. The authors of Hobson- 
fobson point out that theearhest maps show Madraspatanam 
as the Muhammadan settlement, and suggest that the name 
is probably of Muhammadan origin, and connected with 
Madrasa, a college. The name now applied by Indians 
to the city of Madras is Chinnapatanam, which is com- 
monly said to be derived from that of Chennappa, the 
father of the Nayak from whom permission to build Fort 
St George was obtained. The name Chlnapatan occurs on 
coins of the Moghul Emperors Aurangzlb and Farrukh- 
siyar struck at Madras. It would seem improbable that 
the name is, as has been suggested, connected with the 
intercourse of the Chinese with South India, though Men- 
doza, in his hook on China published in 1585, refers to 

^yy"^^ i'"£o^a^f. 


Fig. 2. Chlnapatan Rupee of Aurangzib. 

a town on the Coromandel coast " called unto this day the 
Soile of the Chinos, for that they did reedifie and make the 
same." Chinese coins are, it may be noted, occasionally 
picked up on the sea-shore at Mahabalipuram (Seven 
Pagodas), 35 miles south of Madras. 

The Travancore State is situated in the extreme south- 
west of the Peninsula, and extends southward to Cape 
Comorin. It is bounded on the north by the Cochin 
State, on the east by the western ghats or ghauts, and 
on the west by the Arabian Sea, which has been defined 
as the name applied to the portion of the Indian Ocean 
bounded east by India, north by Baluchistan and part of 


the southern Persian littoral, west b}' Arabia, and south, 
approximately, by a line between Cape Guardafui, the 
north-east point of Somaliland, and Cape Comorin. The 
State has its own currency, the coins being minted at the 
capital Trivandrum or Tiru-ananthapuram, the holy city of 
Anantha, in whose name coins called Ananthan cash, and 
Ananthan varahas or pagodas, have been struck. At the 
religious ceremony called tulabharam or tulupurushadanam 
(tulu, scales ; purusha, man ; danam, gift), the Maharaja is 
weighed in scales against gold coins called tulabhara kasu, 
specially struck for the occasion, which are subsequently 
distributed among the priests and Brahmans. 

The Cochin State is, for the most part, bounded on the 
north by the district of Malabar ; on the east by the Malabar 
and Coimbatore districts, and Travancore ; on the west by 
Malabar and the Arabian Sea ; and on the south by 
Travancore. The isolated taluk (subdivision) of Chittur is 
entirely surrounded by the districts of Malabar and Coim- 
batore. Coins, called puthans, were formerly current in 
the State, but, owing to the large number of forgeries that 
had found their way into circulation, and the difficulty of 
handling the puthans in Treasury transactions, they were 
withdrawn from circulation, and, since 1900, the British 
Indian coins have been the sole currency. 

Both Travancore and Cochin were principalities before 
the supremacy of the British, and are held under treaties 
made originally with the East India Company. They pay 
subsidies which were originally payments for military 
protection by the British. The troops were ultimately 
withdrawn, and the military protection is now by troops 
outside the territories of the States. 

The State of Pudukkottai (new forl\ which has an area 
of 1,100 square miles, is surrounded by the districts of 
Tanjore, Madura and Trichinopoly, and occupies the ter- 
ritory formerly known as Tondaimandalam (the Tondiman 


country) after the fainily name of the ruhng chief The 
State was given to a former Tondiman as a reward for 
faithful services to the British during the mihtary operations 
against the French, Haidar AH, and the poligars or feudal 
chiefs of Madura and Tinnevelly, in the eighteenth century. 
Copper coins called Amman kasu (goddess cash) are still 
current within the State, and their greatest circulation is 
during the Navaratri or Dusserah festival, when they are 
distributed along with a dole of rice. 

The Banganapalle State (255 square miles) is situated 
on the Deccan table-land within the Kurnool district. A 
title-deed, dated 1761, records that the Nizam appointed 
a certain Muhammadan as Kiladar (commandant) and 
Faujdar (magistrate) of Banganapalle. When the Nizam 
handed over the Ceded Districts, including Kurnool, to the 
British in 1800, the control was transferred to the British 
Government. In 1871, the Muhammadan head of the State 
received the hereditary title of Nawab. 

The Sandur State (161 square miles), which is bounded 
by the Bellary district and a corner of Mysore, is situated 
in a valley shut in between two ranges of hills. The 
sanitarium of Ramandrug, called after a celebrated poligar 
or feudal chief named Komara Rama, is situated on a 
plateau 3256 feet above the sea. The State was originally 
feudatory to the Marathas, and was handed over to an 
ancestor of the present Maratha Raja by a sanad or deed 
of grant. The family name of the Rajas, Ghorpade, is 
connected with a legend, according to which one of 
them scaled a precipitous fort by clinging to a big lizard 
(ghorpade), which was crawling up it. 

The Mysore State, which has been described as a rocky 
triangle, is situated on a table-land or plateau, where the 
eastern and western ghats converge towards the Nilgiri 
hills. It is surrounded by the Madras Presidency except 
in parts of the west and north, where Coorg and the 


Bombay Presidency form the boundaries. It naturally 
divides itself into the malnad or hill country on the west, 
and the maidan or open country to the east. For ad- 
ministrative purposes, it is divided into eight districts, 
viz. Bangalore, Kolar, Tumkur, Mysore, Hassan, Kadur, 
Shimoga, and Chitaldroog. The State is best known in 
history in connection with the Muhammadan usurpers 
Haidar AH and his son Tipu (or Tippoo) Sultan in the 
latter part of the eighteenth century. On the death of 
Tipu, Krishna Raja Wodeyar, the representative of the 
Hindu (Wodeyar) dynasty was placed on the throne, but 
deposed by the British Government some years later. 
The rendition of the State, in connection with which the 
Maharaja was placed on the throne by the Governor of 
Madras, took place in 1881. The mint was abolished in 
1843. Many specimens of the coins of Tipu Sultan and 
Krishna Raja Wodeyar can still be obtained in the bazars 
of Bangalore, Mysore, Seringapatam, etc. 

Coorg is a mountainous province, situated to the west 
of Mysore on the summit and slopes of the western ghats, 
with Mercara as its principal town. The reigning Raja, 
who had shown marked signs of disaffection, was deposed 
in 1834, and the Commissioner of Mysore was appointed 
Commissioner of the new British province. The deposed 
Raja visited England in 1852 with his young daughter, 
to whom Queen Victoria stood sponsor through the Arch- 
bishop of Canterbury at her baptism. The Kodagas 
or Coorgs, who form 20 per cent, of the population, 
are a stalwart race, among whom many ceremonies still 
take the form of indicating physical fitness. They wear 
a picturesque full-dress consisting of dark cloth coat 
showing the arms of a white shirt, with a red or blue 
girdle, in which a war-knife with an ivory or silver hilt 
is stuck. 

The French Possessions consist of Pondicherry,Karikal, 


and Yanam or Yanaon on the east coast, and Mahe on the 
west. The settlement of Pondicherry (115 square miles), 
which includes the town of the same name, is surrounded 
by the South Arcot district, except on the east, where it 
faces the Bay of Bengal. The name Pondicherry, which 
has sometimes been spelt Pont de Cheree, is a corruption 
of Puduchcheri (new town). In early records reference is 
made to Phoolcheri, and silver coins struck by the French 
Company bear the name Phulcheri in Persian characters, 
Karikal (53 square miles) is surrounded on three sides by 
the Tanjore district, and bounded on the east by the Bay 
of Bengal. Many coolies emigrate thence to the French 
colonies. The little settlement of Yanam (5 square miles) 
is situated on the banks of the Gautami Godavari and 
Coringa rivers, and surrounded by the Godavari district. 
Mahe (26 square miles), named after the distinguished 
Frenchman, Mahe de la Bourdonnais, is picturesquely 
situated at the mouth of a river on the Malabar coast, 
about four miles south of Tellicherry. The French have 
also a loge, consisting of about six acres on the sea-shore, 
about half a mile north of the lighthouse at Calicut in 
Malabar. In the town of Masulipatam, on the east coast, 
the quarters of several European nationalities, which have 
carried on trade there, are recognised. These are known as 
the English palem, Valanda (Hollander) palem, and French 
pettah, the ownership of which is still vested in the French 

It is recorded by Sir Mountstuart Grant Duff, a former 
Governor of Madras, that " when I was passing through 
Rome, Biancheri, the speaker of the Italian Parliament, 
said to me, ' What is the size of this country you have 
been governing?' 'It is,' I said, 'larger than Italy, in- 
cluding all the Italian islands.' 'Good heavens,' he replied, 
'what an empire is that, in which such a country is onl}- 
a province ! ' " The area and population of the British 


territories and Native States, as recorded at the census, 1901, 
were as follows : — 

sq. miles Population 

Madras Presidency and Feudatory States 143,221 38,623,066 

Mysore : 29,444 r.539>399 

Travancore ... ... ... ... ... J^opi 2,952,157 

Cochin ... ... ... ... ... 1-361 512,025 

Coorg ... ... ... ... ... 1,582 180,607 

The area tinder consideration is situated \\'ithin the Tropic 
of Cancer between 8° 5' — 20° 26' N. latitude, and 74° 34' — 
85° 12' E. longitude. It embraces the whole of the southern 
portion of the Indian peninsula, which narrows southward 
to the extreme point at Cape Comorin or Kanniyakumari — 
the Komaria akron of Ptolemy — where stands a temple 
dedicated to Kanniyambal, the virgin goddess, which is a 
favourite resort of Hindu pilgrims, who bathe in the sea. 
The irregular northern boundary, due to the accident of 
history, and not to ethnic or physical considerations, is 
formed from east to west by Orissa, the Central Provinces, 
the Native State of Hyderabad or the Nizam's Dominions, 
and the southern districts of the Bombay Presidency. The 
west and east coasts are washed respectively by the waters 
of the Arabian Sea, and those of the Bay of Bengal and 
Gulf of Manaar. This gulf, which is named after the 
island of Manaar off the coast of Ceylon, separates the 
Ramnad and Tinnevelly districts of the Madras Presidency 
from the island of Ceylon. It is bounded on the north by 
the chain of rocks called Adam's Bridge, concerning which 
the legend runs that the common striped or palm-squirrel 
{Scmriis palviaritm) was employed by Rama to assist the 
army of monkeys in the construction of the bridge to 
connect Pamban island with Ceylon, whither Ravana had 
carried off his wife Sita. The squirrel helped the monkeys 
by rolling in the sand on the shore, so as to collect it in its 
hairy coat, and then deposited it between the piled-up 


stones, so as to cement them together. Seeing it fatigued 
by its labours, Rama sympathetically stroked its back with 
the three middle fingers of his right hand, the marks of 
which still persist in the squirrels at the present day. 
According to tradition, the temple at Ramesvaram was 
founded by Rama as a thank-offering for the success of 
the expedition against Ravana. The possibility of making 
an artificial union between South India and Ceylon by 
means of a railway across Adam's Bridge is at the present 
time under consideration. 

North of the Gulf of Manaar are Balk's Straits and Bay, 
named after Mr Robert Balk, Governor of Madras, 1763 — 
1767. The name "Balk's Streights " appears in a survey 
chart dated 1764. The Bay is bounded on the west by the 
coast of the Tanjore and Ramnad districts, and the pro- 
montory of Boint Calimere, which is 40 miles distant from 
Boint Bedro in Ceylon. The reserved forest of Boint 
Calimere is noted for its black-buck (antelope), spotted 
deer,, and wild pigs. 

The Madras Bresidency has been roughly divided into 
five natural divisions, viz. (i) the strip facing the Arabian 
Sea, which is commonly known as the west coast ; (2) the 
central table-land, or Deccan ; (3) the Agencies ; (4) the 
east coast division, extending from Ganjam in the north as 
far south as the Nellore district ; (5) the southern division, 
including the whole of the Tamil country, which is spread 
over the districts of North Arcot, Madras, Chingleput, 
Salem, Coimbatore, South Arcot, Tanjore, Trichinopoly, 
Madura, Ramnad, and Tinnevelly. 

The west coast, which is bounded on the west by the 
Arabian Sea, and on the east by the western ghats, com- 
prises the districts of South Canara and Malabar or 
Malayalam (the hill country), and the Native States of 
Travancore and Cochin, all of which are included in the 
ancient kingdom of Kerala. According to the legend. 


Parasu Rama (Rama of the axe),, an incarnation of Vishnu, 
secured from the gods permission to reclaim some land 
from Varuna the sea-god. Accordingly, he threw his axe 
from Cape Comorin as far as Gokarnam in South Canara, 
and immediately the sea receded, and there was dry land 
between these places as far as the western ghats. To 
people this land, he brought the Nambutiri Brahmans 
from the north, gave them peculiar customs, such as the 
marumakkatayam law of succession (descent in the female 
line), and located them in sixty-four gramams (Brahman 
villages). To rule over the people, an individual named 
Key a Perumal was selected, who was the first king of 
Malabar. The name Kerala is at the present day per- 
petuated in the masonic lodge called Lodge Kerala at 

The name Deccan (dakhan, the south) has been applied 
by some writers to the whole of the Peninsula south of the 
Nerbudda river, but is more properly restricted to the 
table-land between the eastern and western ghats. It 
includes the Cuddapah, Kurnool, Bellary, and Anantapur 
districts, which are also known as the Ceded Districts, as 
they were ceded to the British in 1800, after the death of 
Tipu Sultan. 

The Agencies include the mountainous western portions 
of the Ganjam, Vizagapatam, and Godavari districts in the 
north-east of the Presidency, which are inhabited by various 
wild tribes, e.g. the Kondhs, Savaras, and Koyis, who "differ 
in religion, language, customs, and ethnic characters, from 
the dwellers in the plains below them. Within these tracts, 
the ordinary law of the land is in force only to a limited 
extent. Collectors (or chief administrative officials) have 
extended and unusual judicial authority, both civil and 
criminal, which they exercise under the special title of 
Agents to the Governor." 

The name Northern Circars or Sirkars (divisions of 


territory) has been applied to the territory to the north 
of the Coromandel coast, which includes the districts of 
Ganjam, Vizagapatam, Godavari, Kistna, and Guntur. The 
original Circars of Chicacole, Rajahmundry, Ellore, Konda- 
pille, and Guntur, were the subject of a grant obtained by 
Clive from the Great Moghul in 1765. The tract of country 
known as the Northern Circars corresponds approximately 
with that which, in early times, formed the kingdom of 
Kalinga. The port of Calingapatam in Ganjam, and the 
Oriya Kalinji and Telugu Kalingi castes, still preserve 
the ancient name. Kling (a corruption of Kalinga) is 
applied in the Malay countries, including the Straits 
Settlements, to the people of Peninsular India who trade 
thither or are settled in those regions. The phrase Orang 
Kling Islam, i.e. a Muhammadan from the Madras coast, 
which occurs in Patani Malay, refers to the Labbai and 
Marakkayar Muhammadans, who go to the Straits Settle- 
ments for the purpose of trade. 

The name Coromandel was formerly applied to the east 
coast of the Madras Presidency, extending northward from 
Point Calimere to the mouth of the Kistna river, or even 
further. The origin of the name has given rise to much 
discussion. Thus it has been derived by different authorities 
from Kuru-mandala, the realm of the Kurus, kuru-manal, 
black sand, chola-mandalam, the country of the cholam 
millet, and khara-mandalam, the hot country. It seems 
most probable that the name is a corruption ot Chora- 
mandala or Chola-mandala, i.e. the kingdom of the Cholas, 
who, in the tenth century, had their capital at Tanjore. 

Ma'bar, which must not be confused with Malabar, is 
said by Ibn Batuta, the Arab traveller, who visited South 
India in the fourteenth century, to be the name which the 
Arabs gave to the coast of Coromandel. In Marsden's 
edition of The Travels of Marco Polo, Maabar is defined 
as an appellation, signifying passage or ferry, given by the 


Muluunmadans to Tinnevelly, Madura, and perhaps the 
Tanjore country, from their vicinity to Adam's Bridge. 
Viceroys were appointed by the Sultans of Delhi to govern 
this country. Copper coins are found in the bazars, bearing 
the names of the Sultans Muhammad Taghlak, Kutb-ud- 
din, etc., and of the usurping Viceroy Jalal-ad-din Ahsan 
Shah, who struck coins in his own name. 

The name Carnatic, meaning Canarese country, has 
been loo.sely applied to the Tamil country of Madras, and 
the Telugu district of Nellore. According to one definition, 
" the province known as the Carnatic, in which Madras was 
situated, extended from the Kistna to the Coleroon river, 
and was bounded on the west by Cuddapah, Salem, and 
Dindigul, all of which formed part of the State of Mysore. 
The northern portion was known as the Moghal Carnatic, 
the southern the Mahratta Carnatic." In discussing the 
modern misapplication of the name. Bishop Caldwell writes 
that "when the Muhammadans arrived in Southern India, 
they found that part of it with which they first became 
acquainted — the country above the ghats, including Mysore 
and part of Telingana (the Telugu country) — called the 
Karnataka country. In course of time, by a misapplication 
of terms, they applied the same name Karnataka or Carnatic 
to designate the country below the ghats, as well as that 
which was above. The English have carried the misappli- 
cation a step further, and restricted the name to the country 
below the ghats, which never had any right to it whatever, 
and what is now geographically termed the ' Carnatic ' is 
exclusively the country below the ghats on the Coromandel 
coast." The line of Nawabs of the Carnatic, which com- 
menced with Zu-1-Fikar Khan in 1692, terminated with 
Ghulam Muhammad Ghaus Khan, who died in 1855. In 
1883 a masonic lodge, called Lodge Carnatic, was founded 
in Madras for Indian freemasons. 



The two main mountain systems of Southern India 
are called respectively the eastern and western ghats, 
which include between them the great table-land of the 
Deccan and Mysore, and meet at an angle in the Nllgiri 
Hills. The word ghat, in its proper application, means 
a path of descent or steps leading to a river, such as the 
celebrated bathing-ghat at Benares, or a mountain pass. 
In the latter sense, it is correctly used by Sir Walter Scott 
in The Siirgeoiis Daughter, which deals with Madras and 
Mysore in the time of Haidar Ali. The word is now 
generally applied to the mountain ranges or ghats, through 
which the passes lead. The best known of such passes is 
the Coonoor ghat on the Nllgiris, which can be ascended 
either by the ghat road, or by the mountain railway. The 
road, cut through the hill-side, is protected by a stone 
parapet, to prevent vehicles from falling down the pre- 
cipitous hill-side or khud. The steep bluff called Hulikal 
Drug (tiger-stone fort), or more commonly the Drug, at 
the south end of the ravine which forms the Coonoor ghat, 
is surmounted by an old fort, and derives its name from 
a legend relating to a man-eating tiger which once infested 
the neighbourhood. Other ghats on the Nllgiris are the 
Sigur, Gudalur, Karkur, Sispara and Kotagiri ghats, which 
lead to the Mysore and Wynaad table-lands and the plains 
of Malabar and Coimbatore. 

The name Nllgiris or Blue Mountains (nlla-giri) is 
probably derived from the blue haze which hangs over the 









hills when viewed from the distant plains, and not, as has 
been suggested, to the periodical diffused flowering of the 
blue Strobilaiithes. The Nllgiri plateau, which has an 
average altitude of about 6,500 feet above the sea, consists 
largely of open grassy " downs " dotted with wooded sholas 
(glades), in the vicinity of which a Toda mand or mad 
(settlement), composed of half-barrel-shaped dwelling-huts 
and dairy, and cattle-pen, may be seen here and there. 
The highest point on the Nilgiris is the summit of Doda- 
betta (big hill) rising to a height of 8,760 feet above the 
sea, on which cinchona, jalap, and ipecacuanha, have been 
successfully cultivated. Ootacamund, the hot-weather 
headquarters of the Madras Government, lies in an am- 
phitheatre surrounded by Dodabetta, Snowdon (8,299 feet), 
Elk hill (8,090 feet), and Club hill (8,030 feet). The name 
elk, it may be noted, has been wrongly applied by sports- 
men to the sambar deer. A conspicuous feature of the 
landscape, as one looks westward from Ootacamund, is the 
Kundah range, which rises precipitously from Malabar, 
with the triangular hill called Mukarti (cut nose) peak 
(8,403 feet). Further west, beyond Naduvatam, where 
the Government cinchona factory is situated, is the beauti- 
ful Ouchterlony valley, named after Mr James Ouchterlony, 
a pioneer of coffee cultivation on the Nilgiris, which has 
been extensively opened up for planters' estates. At the 
east end of the plateau is the sacred hill called Ranga- 
swami peak, wfth the isolated pillar rock named Ranga- 
swami pillar. Of the indigenous people who inhabit the 
plateau, the best known are the pastoral and polyandrous 
Todas, who maintain a large-horned race of buffaloes, on 
whose milk, and the products thereof, they depend largely 
for existence. The agricultural element is represented by 
the Badagas, and the artisan by the Kotas. The Badagas 
live in villages, often situated on the summit of low hillocks, 
and surrounded by the fields which yield the crops. Their 









number was returned at the census, I90i,as 34,178, against 
1,267 Kotas, and 807 Todas. The Kotas inhabit seven 
villages, of which six are on the plateau, and one is on 
the western slopes at Gudalur. They are the blacksmiths 
and goldsmiths, carpenters, rope-makers, and potters of the 
hills, and are also employed in cultivation. They are, 
further, the musicians at Toda and Badaga funerals, for 
which they provide the band. The jungles on the slopes 
of the hills are inhabited by the primitive Kurumbas and 
Irulas, some of whom work for the forest department or on 
planters' estates. 

The Wynaad table-land, situated at an average height 
of 3,000 feet above the sea, stretches from the foot of the 
northern slopes of the Nllgiris into Malabar and the 
Mysore plateau. The dense jungles have been opened 
up by planters for the cultivation of coffee, tea, and pepper, 
which gives employment to a large number of Canarese 
and Tamil coolies (hired labourers). In the middle of the 
last century, when planters first began to settle in the 
Wynaad, they purchased the land with the Paniyans living 
on it, who were practically slaves {adscript! glcbce) of the 

The Western Ghats, which commence in the Bombay 
Presidency, extend southward through South Canara 
(which they separate from Mysore), Coorg, Malabar, Cochin, 
and Travancore, and terminate near Cape Comorin in the 
extreme south of the Peninsula. The range is continuous 
and unbroken, except for the natural break, 16 miles 
wide, formed by the Palghat Gap between the districts of 
Coimbatore and Malabar, by means of which, even before 
the days of the railway, communication between the Tamil 
and Malabar countries was easy. The difference in the 
appearance and customs of the indigenous population, 
cultivation, and scenery, eastward and westward of the 
Palghat Gap, is very marked. The Western Ghats range 
T. , 


from about 3,000 to 8,000 feet above the sea, and, in 
Anaimudi (elephant forehead) peak in the High Range 
of Travancore, possess the highest point (8,837 feet) in 
Southern India. A conspicuous peak in South Canara 
called Kudremukh (horse's face), which is resorted to by 
officials as a hot-weather sanitarium, reaches a height of 
6,215 feet above the sea. South of the Palghat Gap are 
a series of hill ranges, which have received a variety of 
names. The Anaimalais, or elephant hills, which extend 
from the Coimbatore district southward into Travancore, 
are inhabited by Kadirs, Muduvars, Malasars, and other 
hill tribes. An important forest station is situated, in the 
midst of a dense bamboo jungle, at Mount Stuart, playfully 
named after Sir Mountstuart Grant Duff, who visited the 
spot when Governor of Madras. On the Anaimalais, ele- 
phants are caught in pits — made with hands and covered 
over with bamboo and earth for the purpose of securing 
them^ — and tamed. The forests of the Nelliampathis 
(1,500 to 5,000 feet) in the Cochin State have been opened 
up in recent years by the Cochin Forest Department for 
the sake of their timber. Further south, in Travancore, 
are the Cardamom and Firmed hills (3,000 to 3,500 feet), 
with the hill-station of Firmed. In the southern portion 
of the ghats is the conical peak called Agastyamalai (6,200 
feet), where the sage Agastya Maharshi, who is regarded 
as the pioneer of Aryan civilisation in Southern India, is 
supposed still to live as a Yogi in pious seclusion. The 
Palni hills, which run out from the main line of the ghats 
in a north-easterly direction in the Madura district, derive 
their name from the town of Falni. Thither devotees flock 
from Malabar and other places to worship at the shrine of 
Subramaniya, some with silver mouth-locks, others with 
a skewer piercing the cheeks, or carrying a kavadi (portable 
shrine) containing milk or fish. The Falnis are divided 
into the Eastern Tower Falnis (3,000 to 4,000 feet), and 








the Western Palais with a mean elevation of 7,000 feet, 
rising in Vembadi Shola hill to 8,218 feet above the sea. 
In the central portion of the range is the popular hill- 
station of Kodaikanal (7,200 feet), which is reached by a 
ghat road from the town of Periyakulam near the foot of 
the hills. The crow has not yet found its way to Kodai- 
kanal, and it is on record that a Brahman who had to 
perform the sradh or anniversary ceremony for his dead 
father, in which crows play an important part, telegraphed 
to Periyakulam for a pair of these birds, which duly 
arrived in a cage. The Palnis are inhabited, among 
others, by the Kunnuvans, and by the Paliyans, who are 
also found further south near the foot of the Tinnevelly 

The Eastern Ghats have been described as "a disjointed 
line of small confused ranges which begin in Orissa, pass 
into Ganjam, the northernmost district of the Madras 
Presidency, and run through a greater or less extent of 
all the districts which lie between Ganjam and the Nllgiri 
plateau. They are about 2,000 feet in elevation on an 
average, and their highest peaks are less than 6,000 feet. 
In Ganjam and Vizagapatam they run close to the shore 
of the Bay of Bengal, but, as they travel southwards, they 
recede further inland, and leave a stretch of low country 
from 100 to 150 miles wide between their easternmost 
spurs and the sea." In the three northern districts of 
Ganjam, Vizagapatam and Godavari, the hill countr}' is 
included in the Agencies (p. 10). The Maliahs or high- 
lands of Ganjam, composed of a series of undulating pla- 
teaux, contain the highest peaks, named Singarazu and 
Mahendragiri, which rise to a height of nearly 5,000 feet 
above the sea. Many passes lead into these hills, and 
include the Kalingia ghat from Russellkonda, the Muni- 
singhi ghat from Parlakimedi, and the Taptapani or hot- 
spring ghat, so named from its containing a hot sulphur 


spring. The Maliahs are inhabited, among others, by 
Kondhs, Savaras, Gonds, and Pano hill weavers. The 
Kondhs formerly performed human or meriah sacrifices, 
and the Madras Museum possesses a wooden post from 
Balliguda, roughly hewn into the shape of an elephant's 
head, on which the sacrificial victim was tied. In the 
Vizagapatam district the Jeypore hills form a series of 
plateaux, with an average elevation of 3,000 feet above the 
sea. In the Agency tracts of the Godavari district is the 
Rampa country, which was the scene of man)' disturbances, 
commencing at the end of the eighteenth century, and 
culminating in the Rampa rebellion of 1879. During one 
of these disturbances, in 1834, the body of one Payaka 
Rao, who was hanged by the British, was suspended in an 
iron cage on a gibbet. In the jungles of Anantapur there 
was formerly a gibbet, now in the Madras Museum, from 
which two iron cages were suspended by iron hooks. Ac- 
cording to local tradition, the two ringleaders of a band of 
dacoits (robbers) were put alive into the cages, and starved 
to death. On a stone near the gibbet was an inscription 
recording that two men were hung in 1837 ^o^ killing a 
man by throwing a noose. In the Kurnool district are 
two ranges of hills called the Erramalas (red hills), about 
600 feet above the sea, and the Nallamalais (black hills) 
with Bhairani Konda (3,048 feet) as the highest point. 
The latter are inhabited by the jungle Chenchus, who are 
said to levy a toll in return for protecting pilgrims on their 
way to the shrine of Mallikarjuna (Siva) at Srisailam. 
The Palkonda or milk hills, which are said to derive their 
name from the excellent grazing they afford, commence at 
the sacred hill of Tirumala or Tirupati, and run through 
the Cuddapah district into Anantapur at an average eleva- 
tion of 2,000 feet above the sea. In the Nagari hills of the 
North Arcot district are a peak called Nagari Nose (2,824 
feet), and a plateau called Kettle Bottom, which serve as 


landmarks for ships making the port of Madras. The 
Javadi hills of North Arcot, the Kalrayan, Kollaimalai, 
and Shevaroy hills of Salem, and the Pachaimalais of Tri- 
chinopoly, are all inhabited by Malayalis (=hill people), 
who, according to tradition, originally belonged to the 
Vellala caste of cultivators, and emigrated from the sacred 
city of Kanchipuram (Conjeeveram) to the hills when 
Muhammadan rule was dominant in Southern India. The 
Shevaroy hills contain the small hill-station of Yercaud or 
Erkad (4,500 feet). The Malayalis hold an annual festival 
on the summit of the Shevarayan hill, where the temple 
of the god Servarayan is situated in the midst of a sacred 

The most mountainous region of the Mysore State, 
situated in the Kadur district, is bordered on the west by 
the Western Ghats. It has been said to rise into some of 
the loftiest peaks between the Nllgiris and the Himalayas, 
supporting on its centre the stupendous barrier of the Baba 
Buden chain, which rises, in Mulainagiri, to 6,317 feet 
above the sea. The god of the temple at Belur is believed 
to make occasional trips to the Baba Buden hills to visit 
the goddess, wearing a huge pair of slippers kept for him 
at the temple, which are renewed by leather-workers when 
they become worn out, and presented at the shrine. In 
the Mysore district, the Biligirirangan range reaches a 
height of 5,091 feet, and, in the Hassan district, the 
Subrahmanya or Pushpagiri mountain rises to 5,626 feet. 
Further east, in the Kolar district, the hill range reaches 
its highest point at Nandidrug (4,851 feet). 



From the great watershed of the western ghats, only 
short rivers flow westward through the plains of South 
Canara, Malabar, Cochin, and Travancore, into the Arabian 
Sea, the main drainage making its way for the most part 
eastward, and emptying itself into the Bay of Bengal. 

The Gersoppa Falls, formed by the Sharavati river, and 
situated on the Bombay-Mysore frontier, derive their name 
from the village of Gersoppa. The name has been corrupted 
by Anglo-Indians into Grasshopper Falls. The falls are 
said to have few rivals in the world in height, volume, and 
beauty, the river hurling itself over a cliff 830 feet high in 
four cascades called the Raja or Horse-shoe, Roarer, Rocket, 
and La Dame Blanche. 

Of the rivers which flow westward, communicating, in 
many cases, with the extensive system of backwaters (p. 190), 
may be noted the Netravati and Gurpur rivers in South 
Canara, the Ponnani, Beypore, and Valarpattanam in 
Malabar, and, further south, in Cochin and Travancore, 
the Alwaye, Chalakudi, and Periyar. The Netravati and 
Gurpur rivers have a common entrance into the sea at 
Mangalore. The Beypore river flows through the Nilambur 
valley, and much timber from the forests is floated down 
to its mouth, near which it is connected with Calicut by 
the Conolly canal. The Ponnani forms part of the boundary 


between Malabar and the Cochin State. The upper waters 
of the Periyar, which rises on the Sivagiri hills, have been 
utilised in connection with the Periyar Project (p. 203). 

Of the rivers which flow eastward into the Ba}- of 
Bengal, the most celebrated are the Godavari, Cauver}', and 

The Godavari or Goda river (900 miles) rises on a hill 
in the Nasik district of the Bombay Presidency. At its 
source the water trickles from the mouth of a graven 
image. The sacred nature of the river is said to have been 
revealed to Rama b}' the rishi Gautama. According to 
tradition, it proceeds by an underground passage from the 
same source as the Ganges, and reaches the sea by seven 
branches, made by the seven rishis Kasyapa, Atri, Gau- 
tama, Bharadvaja, Vasishta, Visvamitra, and Jamadagni. 
The pilgrimage, called sapta sagara yatra, or pilgrimage of 
the seven confluences, is made especially by those desirous 
of offspring. The Godavari flows past the town of Nasik, 
one of the most sacred places of Hindu pilgrimage, where 
the banks and bed of the river are studded with bathing- 
ghats, temples, and shrines. It traverses the Hyderabad 
State, and forms the boundary between it and the Godavari 
district of the Madras Presidency, being joined by the 
Sabari or Saveri river. Thence it flows between the Goda- 
vari and Kistna districts, and passes through the gorge, 
where it is contracted by the eastern ghats, through which 
it passes. When the river is in flood, boatmen are said to 
break a coconut to appease the demon Biraiya, and so 
save themselves from being dashed against the rocks, and 
drowned in a whirlpool. Leaving the hills, the river opens 
out into broad reaches dotted with islands called lunkas, on 
the fertile soil of which tobacco is cultivated. After passing 
Rajahmundry, it divides, at Dowlaishweram, into two 
branches, the Gautami Godavari and Vasishta Godavari, 
and so reaches the Bay of Bengal. The Gautami Goda\ari 


flows past the French settlement of Yanam, and enters the 
sea near Point Godavari. At its mouth is the Sacramento 
shoal, where the United States steam frigate Sacramento 
went ashore in 1867. The Vasishta Godavari reaches the 
coast at Point Narasapur. A few miles above the entrance 
into the sea, a branch, called the Vainateyam, forms the 
island of Nagaram between itself and the Vasishta Godavari. 
The Pushkaram festival, held once in twelve years, during 
which Telugus bathe at various spots on the banks of the 
Godavari, is regarded by them as being of the same im- 
portance as the Mahamakam festival at Kumbakonam 
(p. 256) is to all Hindus. The ghat at Rajahmundry, where 
Hindus bathe in the river, is called Kotilingam (crore of 
lingams) ghat, in connection with a legend. Pilgrims who 
go from the Godavari district to Benares empty half of the 
contents of the pots of Ganges water, which they bring 
back with them, into the Godavari, and replenish them 

The Kistna or Krishna river (800 miles) rises in the 
western ghats, north of the hill-station of Mahabaleshwar 
in the Bombay Presidency, and enters the Hyderabad State, 
being joined by the Tungabhadra in the Raichur district of 
the Nizam's Dominions. On reaching the eastern ghats, it 
turns sharply south-east, and, flowing between the Kistna 
and Guntur districts, passes the town of Bezwada, and 
enters the Bay of Bengal by two mouths, one of which 
is at the low headland of Point Divi. The ruined stupa of 
Amaravati is situated on the south bank of the river, which, 
in the vicinity thereof, is studded with islands or lunkas. 

Between the Godavari and Kistna districts is the Colair 
(Kolleru) lake. This, it has been said, is "the onl)^ large 
natural freshwater lake in the Madras Presidency. Half 
lake, half swamp, it is a great shallow depression, which was 
doubtless originally part of the old Bay of Bengal. On 
either side of it the Godavari and Kistna pushed their 


deltas further and further out into the sea, until the south- 
ward extremity of the one joined the northward limit of 
the other, and the arm of land thus formed cut off the 
Colair depression from the salt-water. The streams which 
flow into it now keep its waters fresh, but the silt they 
carry is rapidly filling it up, and, in the course of time, it 
will inevitably disappear. During the monsoon it exceeds 
lOO square miles, but, in the dry weather, it shrinks con- 
siderabl)% and sometimes, as in the drought of 1900, the 
lake dries up altogether." 

The Tungabhadra river (400 miles) is formed by the 
union of the Tunga and Bhadra, which rise together in the 
western ghats at Gangamula in Mysore, and unite at 
Kudali in the Shimoga district of that State. The river 
forms the boundary between Mysore and Bombay, Bombay 
and Madras, and Madras and Hyderabad, and eventually 
joins the Kistna river near Kurnool. In its course it 
passes the ruined city of Vijayanagar, amid scenery, of 
which enormous rocky boulders are the dominant feature. 
Among other affluents, it receives the Hagari or Vedavati, 
formed by two rivers called the Veda and Avati, which rise 
in the Baba Budan hills in Mysore. In the Chitaldroog 
district of Mysore, the Hagari supplies the great Mari 
Kanave reservoir, which has an area of 34 square miles. 
It finally joins the Tungabhadra at Halekota. On the 
Tungabhadra, as on some other rivers, coracles are used for 
conveying passengers from place to place. Concerning 
this primitive type of boat. Bishop Whitehead writes that 
it " corresponds exactly to my idea of the coracle of the 
ancient Britons. It consists of a very large, round wicker 
basket, about eight or nine feet in diameter, covered over 
with leather, and propelled by paddles. As a rule, it spins 
round and round, but the boatmen can keep it fairly 
straight, when exhorted to do so. Some straw had been 
placed in the bottom of the coracle, and we were allowed 


the luxury of chairs to sit upon, but it is safer to sit on 
the straw, as a coracle is generally in a state of unstable 
equilibrium." The French traveller Tavernier, who visited 
India in the seventeenth century, wrote (1676) that, on his 
way to Golconda, " the boats employed in crossing the 
river are like large baskets, at the bottom of which some 
faggots are placed, upon which carpets are spread." 

The Penner river rises on Channarayan-betta, in the 
Kolar district of Mysore, and enters the Anantapur district 
of the Madras Presidency. After passing through the 
Cuddapah and Nellore districts, it enters the Bay of Bengal 
below the town of Nellore. In Cuddapah it is joined by 
the Chitravati, and flows through the gorge of Gandikota 
(gorge fort), which has been described as the most splendid 
river pass in South India, with the exception of the wild 
bed of the Kistna, where it cuts its way through the Nalla- 
malai hills. The fort of Gandikota is situated on the top 
of a hill, 1,670 feet above the sea, overlooking the river. 
Lower down, the Penner is joined by the Papaghni river. 

The Palar river (230 miles) is supposed to rise on 
Nandidroog, in the Kolar district of Mysore. The Beta- 
mangala tank, which is supplied by it, is the source of the 
water-supply for the Kolar gold-fields. The river enters 
the North Arcot district of the Madras Presidency, and, 
passing Vellore, Arcot, and Chingleput, reaches the Bay of 
Bengal near Sadras. 

The Ponnaiyar river (250 miles) rises on Channarayan- 
betta in Mysore, and, entering the Madras Presidency, flows 
through the Salem and South Arcot districts. It finally 
reaches the coast at Cuddalore. In the Tamil month Tai, 
the Ganges is believed to flow into it by an underground 
passage, and a festival is celebrated on its banks. 

The Vellar river (135 miles) is formed by the junction 
of the Vasishtanadi and Swetanadi, which rise in the Salem 
district, and carry off the drainage of the Pachaimalai, 


Kollaimalai, and Kalrayan hills. It constitutes the boundary 
between the South Arcot and Trichinopoly districts, and 
reaches the Bay of Bengal at Porto Novo. According to 
tradition, it reaches the waters of the Coleroon out at sea ; 
and, in the Tamil month Masi, the idol from the temple at 
Srimushnam is taken in procession to the shore opposite 
the spot, and Hindus bathe in the sea. 

The Cauvery or Kaveri (475 miles) is sometimes called 
the Dakshina Ganga, or Ganges of the south. Its divine 
origin is set forth in the Kaveri MaJidtviya. Among the 
Hindu death-rites is the sacred bath for the atonement of 
sins and purification of the soul, which is called kaveri or 
samudra snana, according as the dying person is near a 
river or the sea. The Cauvery rises at Tale-Kaveri on the 
Brahmagiri hills in Coorg. Near the Coorg frontier it flows 
past Fraserpet, and enters the Mysore State, passing soon 
afterwards through a narrow gorge, with a fall which gives 
rise to the rapids of Chunchankatte. The Kabbani river 
joins it at Tirumakudlu near Narsipur, and the confluence 
is regarded as a very sacred spot. In its course through 
Mysore, the Cauvery forms the islands of Seringapatam and 
Sivasamudram (sea of Siva). At the latter are the cele- 
brated Cauvery Falls, called the Gagana Chukki (sky 
spray) and Bhar Chukki (heavy spray), which have been 
said to far surpass the falls of the Rhine at Schaffhausen in 
height, volume, and grandeur. In the centre of the Bhar 
Chukki is a hollow shaped like a horse-shoe, down which 
the main stream falls. In the rainy season, the Bhar 
Chukki is about a quarter of a mile broad. On the island 
of Sivasamudram is the tomb of Pir Wall, a Muhammadan 
saint, which is the scene of an annual festival. Below the 
falls, the river narrows to form the meke dhatu or goat's 
leap. At Sivasamudram the Cauvery enters the Madras 
Presidency, forming the boundary between the Salem and 
Coimbatore districts, and further on enters the Trichinopoly 






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30 rivp:rs 

district. Near Alambadi in Coimbatore is the smoking rock, 
so named from a rock which throws up a cloud of spray 
from the middle of the river. According to native belief, 
there is a hole or chasm, four palm trees deep, into which 
the water falls. At the island of Srirangam, near Trichino- 
poly, which is about nineteen miles in length, the river 
divides into two main delta-branches, the Coleroon or 
Kollidam and Cauvery, which irrigate the fertile delta called 
the garden of South India. The former enters the Bay of 
Bengal near Devikotta, and the latter shrinks into an 
insignificant stream. 

The chief tributaries of the Cauvery in the Madras 
Presidency are the Bhavani, Noyil, and Amaravati. The 
Bhavani, famous for its mahseer {Barbiis tor) fishing, which 
rises in the Attapadi valley in Malabar, is joined by the 
Moyar, and, flowing past Mettupalaiyam, where it is crossed 
by the Nllgiri railway, unites with the Cauvery near the 
town of Bhavani. The Moyar commences as the Paikara 
river, which rises on the slopes of Mukarti peak on the 
Nllgiris, and, flowing past Paikara, forms the Paikara falls, 
and so reaches the Wynaad plateau. Under the name of 
the Moyar it runs through the Mysore ditch, separating 
the Nllgiris from Mysore, and enters the Bhavani. 

The Vaigai river rises by two streams, which drain the 
Kumbam and Varushanad valleys of the Madura district, 
and receives much of the water from the Palni hills. 
Passing the town of Madura, it enters the Bay of Bengal 
about lo miles east of Ramnad. Its water-supply has been 
much increased in recent years by the Periyar Project. 

The Tambraparni river rises on the slopes of Agasty- 
amalai, a conical peak in the Travancore State, and reaches 
the plains of the Tinnevelly district by the falls of Papa- 
nasam (papa, sin ; nasam, destruction). This is a very sacred 
spot, with a Saivite temple, and is visited by large numbers 
of pilgrims. The fish in the river are fed from the temple 


funds. The river finall)' enters the sea in the (jiilf of 
Manaar. It receives, in its course, the waters of the 
Chittar river, which forms the Kuttalam or Courtallum 
falls in the Tenkasi taluk of the Tinnevelly district. Near 
the falls is the temple of Kuttalanathaswami, and the spot 
is regarded as sacred by Hindus, who bathe there. 



The Laccadives (laksha dvlpa, a hundred thousand 
islands) are a group of coral-reefs and islands (atolls), 
situated between 10° and 12° N., and 71° 40' and 74° E,, 
at a distance of about 125 to 200 miles from the Malabar 
coast. The northern group, called the Amindivi islands, 
consists of five islands — Chetlat, Kiltan, Kadamat, Amini, 
and Bitra — which are administered by the Collector of South 
Canara. The southern group, which comes within the juris- 
diction of the Collector of Malabar, is made up of Androth, 
Kavaratti, Agatti or Akatti, Kalpeni, and the isolated atoll 
of Minicoy, intermediate between the Laccadives and the 
Maldive islands further south, which are tributary to the 
Ceylon Government. For administrative purposes. Professor 
Stanley Gardiner informs us, the Maldives are divided into 
thirteen provinces, which are called Atolu, each with a 
governor, the Atoluveri. These provinces are often con- 
terminous with the atolls, whence arose this term. The 
Laccadive islands are low-lying, and recognisable from the 
sea by means of the coconut plantations, with which they 
are covered. They are said to have emerged, in nearly all 
cases, from the eastern and protected side of the reef, the 
western side being completely exposed to the south-west 


monsoon. The surface coral has been excavated on the 
principal islands (e.g. Androth and Kalpeni), according to 
tradition by a race of giants. In the excavations, various 
food-grains and vegetables are cultivated. For their liveli- 
hood, the islanders depend largely on the products of the 
coconut, which are taken in sailing-boats to the vv^est 
coast. Great damage is done to the coconut trees by 
rats, for the extermination of which owls, rat-snakes, and 
mungooses, have been introduced from time to time. In 
recent times, periodical kuttams (assemblies) or rat-hunts 
have been organised, and it is said that the Amin (head- 
man) has the power of inflicting a fine for non-attendance 
thereat. The bulk of the population of the Laccadive 
islands is made up of Muhammadan Mappillas. According 
to tradition, these Mappillas were originally inhabitants of 
Malabar — Nambutiri Brahmans, Nayars, Tiyans, etc.— who 
went in search of Cheraman Perunial, king of Malabar, 
who was converted to the Muhammadan faith and left for 
Mecca, and were wrecked on the islands. They are divided 
into castes, of which the highest is represented by the 
Koyas, who own the coconut trees and boats (odams). 
The navigating class is represented by the Malumis (pilots), 
and the lowest class are the Melacheris, who carry out the 
tree-tapping, coconut-plucking, and other menial services. 
The Koyas are said to be descendants of Nambutiris, the 
Malumis of Nayars, and the Melacheris of Tiyans and 

Pamban (snake) island, on the south-east coast, is said 
to owe its name to the tortuous, snake-like course of the 
narrow Pamban Pass, 1,350 yards in width, which separates 
it from the mainland. It is recorded by Professor Stanley 
Gardiner that there are clear indications of a former land 
connection between India and north Ceylon, the so-called 
Adam's Bridge, and the islands of Manaar on the Ceylon 
coast and Pamban, appearing indubitably to be the remains 



of a formerly elevated limestone flat, which has been more 
or less cut down by the sea to the low-tide level. Tradition 
runs to the effect that, at the time of the separation of the 
island from the mainland on the one side, and Ceylon on 
the other, the cows became prisoners on it, took to living 
on sea-weeds, and became converted into diminutive meta- 
morphosed cows, which may still be seen grazing on the 
shore. The legend is based on the fancied resemblance of 
the horned coffer-fishes {Ostracion cornutus), which are 
frequently caught in the fishing-nets, to cattle. The island, 
which is about eleven miles long by six wide at its widest 
part, narrows towards the eastern end, where a strip of 






Fig. 7. Ostracion cornutus. 

sand, with wind-blown sand-dunes, runs down to a point 
towards Adam's Bridge. On the west side of the Pamban 
Pass is the Great Dam, consisting of large masses of sand- 
stone, all having a more or less flat surface, which are said 
to have once formed part of the causeway extending across 
to the mainland. The remains of this causeway are still 
visible on the road leading across the island from the town 
of Pamban to Ramesvaram. This sacred place is visited, 
on account of its temple, by huge numbers of pilgrims 
from all parts of India, who go through a course of 
ceremonies and ablutions in the sea under the direction of 




a priest, and deposit coins and clay images therein. The 
population of Pamban is largely made up of boatmen and 
fishermen, some of whom find employment in ferrying 
pilgrims from the mainland to the island. Coolies are 
engaged in warping vessels through the Pass, when the 
wind is adverse. The north coast of the island is fringed 
by a coral-reef. In the extension of the reef-band towards 
Ramesvaram appears a limestone, consisting entirely of 
calcareous algae {Lithothamniunt), with a few scattered 

>r » 

Fig. 8. Sub-fossil Coral Reef, Pamban. 

coral masses. Near Pamban, a sub- fossil reef, largely 
composed of enormous blocks of Porites, forms a miniature 
cliff, several feet in height, above high-tide mark. Some 
years ago masses of pumice were heaped up on the shore 
near this reef. The pumice was no doubt discharged from 
the volcano of Krakatoa in the Straits of Sunda, during 
the great eruption of 1883, and drifted by currents across 
the ocean. South of the Pamban Pass are a series of little 
coral islands (Pulli, Pullivausel, Coorisuddy, etc.), which 


form a natural breakwater, protecting the Pass and channels 
leading to it from the violence of the south-west winds. 
The South India Railway Company is at the present time 
building a viaduct across the Pamban Pass, with an opening 
for vessels by means of a Scherzer lifting bridge. The 
railway line goes across the island to the extreme point at 
Dhanushkodi, and arrangements are being made for a 
steamer service to Talemanaar in Ceylon. 

The low and swampy Hope Island, situated near one of 
the mouths of the Godavari river, is covered with low 
jungle, and to a great extent submerged during high tides. 

The coral-girt island, called Hare Island, outside which 
steamers anchor, is situated 2^ miles from Tuticorin, 
Hares and partridges may be shot on it, and sluggish 
holothurians (beches-de-mer) collected in abundance at 

Srlharikota is a low-lying alluvial island, 35 miles long, 
off the Nellore coast, bounded on the east by the Bay of 
Bengal, and on the west by Pulicat lake. On the north it 
is separated from the mainland by a narrow channel. It is 
covered with jungle, and affords an important source of 
supply of fuel for firewood, which is transported to Madras 
by the Buckingham Canal. The island is the head-quarters 
of the jungle Yanadis, who are expert sportsmen and 
trackers (shikaris), and collect minor forest produce for the 
Forest Department. 

The alluvial deposit, which forms the island of Vypeen 
on the west coast, 14! miles in length, is bounded on the 
west by the Arabian Sea, and cut off from the land on the 
north, south, and east, by the mouths of the Cranganore 
and Cochin rivers, and the backwater. According to 
tradition, the island was thrown up in 1341 A.D., and, from 
that time, a new era, called the Pudu Veppu, or era of the 
new bank, began. The suggestion has been made that the 
name Pudu Veppu may commemorate the establishment 



of the first Christian church on the island, or the date 
when it first became cultivatable. The spot possesses con- 
siderable historic interest. " Cranganore (Kudangalur) has 
been confidently identified with the Musirisof the ancients, 
the greatest emporium of India according to Pliny the 
Elder, which stood on a river two miles from its mouth 
according to the Periplus Maris Eiythrcsi, the river being 
kno\\n as the Pseudostomos or False Mouth, a correct 
translation of Alimukam, as the mouth of the Periyar is 
still called." 

The island, known as Sacrifice Rock, situated about 
eight miles out at sea, to the north of Quilandi in Malabar, 
is probably the white island of the Periplus Maris 
Erythrm, and is still called Velliyan Kallu, or white rock, 
owing to the deposit of white excrement (guano) of birds 
on it. It is said to have received the name of Sacrifice 
Rock, because the Kottakkal Kunhali Marakkar pirates 
slaughtered the crew of a Portuguese vessel there, or 
according to another version, because Haidar Ali left state 
prisoners and others there, to die of hunger and thirst. 
The naturalist Jerdon found on the island a cave, which 
contained a large number of nests of the edible-nest 
swiftlet {Collocalia fiiciphaga), which are made of grass, 
moss, and feathers, cemented together by inspissated 

The Darya Bahadurgarh island shelters the roadstead 
off Malpe in South Canara. A few miles further north 
is St Mary's Island, which is so called because Vasco da 
Gama is said to have put up a cross on it, when he landed 
there in 1498. The islets opposite to the mouth of the 
inlet of the sea at Mulki in South Canara are known as 
the Mulki Rocks. 



The most important ports from north to south are : 
(a) on the east coast, Gopalpur, CaHngapatam, BimHpatam, 
Vizagapatam, Cocanada, Masuhpatam, Madras, Pondicherry, 
Cuddalore, Karikal, Negapatam, Pamban, and Tuticorin ; 
(d) on the west coast, Mangalore, Cannanore, TelHcherry, 
CaHcut, Cochin, Alleppey, Ouilon, and Kolachel. 

There is, in South India, no natural harbour to serve as 
a haven for ocean-going steamers during stormy weather. 
The maritime trade is mainly conducted from open road- 
steads, where big ships lie at anchor, sometimes at a distance 
of several miles from the shore. On the west coast, the 
ports are more or less closed to shipping during the rough 
weather of the south-west monsoon. 

The oily mud-banks of Alleppey and Narakkal on the 
Travancore-Cochin coast afford smooth-water anchorage 
for ships during the south-west monsoon, waves passing 
over the banks being diminished in height, and lessened in 
velocity. Dr W. King was of opinion that the oil in the 
mud is derived from the decomposition of organisms, and 
a distillation of oil in the subjacent lignitiferous deposits 
belonging to the Warkilli strata. Sometimes the mud-bank 
of Narakkal is heaped against the shore, and a channel has 
to be cut to enable boats to reach the sea. At times the 
mud deposits appear out at sea, rising to a height of three 
or four feet. It has been shown by Messrs Rohde and 

«:;^r:r-^^ i 'jft,*jtjf. 












Crawford: (a) that, when the backwaters of Alleppey, 
which open into the sea, rise, the extent of the smooth- 
water tract increases, and mud " volcanoes " burst into the 
sea ; (3) that the mud-bank at Alleppey is formed at 
intervals, and is gradually washed southward by littoral 
currents, and slowly dissipated by the waves. Usually, 
before the old bank has disappeared, a new one starts. 
Sometimes, for several miles down the coast, and from the 
beach out to sea for a mile and a half, the sea is nothing 
but liquid mud, which gives rise to a heavy mortality 
among the fishes. It has been assumed by Mr P. Lake 
that, under the sand of Alleppey, is a layer of mud which 
crops out under the sea. When the backwater rises to any 
height, the pressure forces the mud out under the sea, and 
forms the mud-bank. The Narakkal mud-bank is, accord- 
ing to Mr Lake, probably to a large extent formed of the 
silt carried down by the Cranganore river. 

Cargo is, at many ports, conveyed from ships in light 
boats capable of passing through the surf which breaks on 
the sandy shore. The present day masula (or mussoola) 
boat of the Madras coast is of the same build now as it 
was several centuries ago. It was recorded by a traveller 
in 1673 that he " went ashore in a Mussoola, a boat wherein 
ten men paddle, the two aftermost of which are the Steers- 
men, using their paddles instead of a Rudder. The Boat 
is not strengthened with knee-timbers as ours are ; the 
bended Planks are sewed together with Rope-yarn of the 
Cocoe, and calked with Dammar so artificially that it yields 
to every ambitious surf Otherwise it could not get ashore, 
the Bar knocking in pieces all that are inflexible." The 
archives of Madras contain repeated references to Europeans 
being thrown violently on shore, or drowned from the over- 
turning of masula boats in the surf, through which a landing 
had to be effected before the Madras pier was built. It is 
recorded in the Fort St George Consultations, 1679, that 


" a mussoollee being overturned, although it was very 
smooth water, and no surf, and one EngHshman being 
drowned, a Dutchman being with difficulty recovered, the 
boatmen were seized and put in prison, one escaping." 

The screw-pile pier at Madras was completed in 1862. 
The stone commemorating the commencement of the 
harbour was laid by the Prince of Wales (afterwards King 
Edward VII) in 1875. The harbour, when completed, con- 
sisted of two parallel masonry breakwaters, each 500 yards 
distant from the pier, rurming out at right angles to the 
'shore for 1200 yards into 7| fathoms of water, and bending 
towards each other, so as to leave an opening 500 feet wide 
in the centre of the east side for the ingress and egress of 
ships. Quite recently, a new north-east entrance has been 
made, and was first used, in the presence of the Viceroy, in 
1909. The old east entrance, which was rapidly shallowing 
owing to silting of sand, has since been permanently closed. 

Proposals have long been under consideration for the 
construction of a harbour at Vizagapatam, where the tidal 
backwater is sheltered on the south by the headland of 
Dolphin's Nose and the hills behind it, and on the other 
side by distant hills. The conclusion arrived at by an 
expert was that a groin from the end of Dolphin's Nose 
would stop the formation of the sand-bar, produced by the 
waves acting on the sand from the south, which stretches 
across the entrance to the backwater. At Vizagapatam, a 
Muhammadan saint is buried on the top of the hill over- 
looking the backwater. He is considered to have great 
power over the waters of the Bay of Bengal, and silver 
dhonis (native vessels) are offered at his shrine by Hindu 
shipowners after a successful voyage. 

Proposals have also been under consideration to cut a 
ship-canal through Pamban island, to obviate the necessity 
of large steamers, which are making for ports along the east 
coast, going out of their way round Ceylon. A channel. 



which is used by small coasting steamers, has been arti- 
ficially produced b}' deepening the Pamban Pass, which 
separates the island from the mainland of the Ramnad 

The extensive backwater of Cochin, which covers an 
area of several square miles, is connected with the sea by 
the mouth of the Cochin river. Along the river-banks are 
ranged rows of fishing nets, called " Chinese nets," which 

Fig. 10. Dolphin's Nose, Vizagapatam. 

are worked from wood and bamboo platforms or jetties. 
The backwater affords safe anchorage for vessels of lio-ht 
draught, but the bar, which is about a mile from the shore, 
presents an obstacle to the passage of big ships. 

Emigration takes place from various ports on the east 
coast, e.g. Tuticorin, Negapatam, Karikal, Madras, and 
Cocanada, to Natal, Fiji, the Straits Settlements, the French 
colonies, Ceylon, and Burma. It is said that the mail 

IT eSi?-.-^ 4 1 ,-1. -^ 








steamers to Rangoon carry consignments of stone and 
metal idols, commissioned by the South Indian settlers in 
Burma for the purpose of domestic and public worship. 

Nearly half the maritime trade is conducted from the 
port of Madras, which is followed in order of importance 
by Tuticorin — the terminus of the South India Railway — 
and Cochin. 

Exports of the Principal Articles, 19 lo — 11. 

Cotton, raw ... 
Hides and Skins 

Grains and Pulses ... 


Tea ... 

Cotton manufactures 


Coir ... 



Cotton twist and yarn 
Drugs, medicines, and 

narcotics ... 

Bristles and fibres for 

Dyeing and tanning 

materials ... 


Silk, raw 

Castor, cotton, ground-nut, niger, 

gingelly, coriander, etc. 
Rice, 99 per cent. 

Chiefly coconut kernels or copra 
Coconut fibre and matting 
Pepper, ginger, chillies, etc. 
Chiefly coconut oil, also castor, 
ground-nut, and lemon-grass... 

Leaf tobacco, cigars, senna leaves, 
nux-vomica, etc. 

Sandalw ood, blackwood or rose- 
wood, teak, etc. 

Mainly palmyra palm fibre 

Indigo, turmeric, myrabolams, 

Exports 1909 — 10, Rs 1,95,120... 











Value of Exports to the principal countries outside 
India, 19 10 — 11. 

Lakhs of Rupees 

British Empire 






Straits Settlements 

United States of America 




Climate has been defined as the average condition of 
the atmosphere, while weather denotes a single circum- 
stance, or event, in the series of conditions. The climate of 
a place is thus in a sense its average weather. Two types 
of climate have been described as occurring in the Indian 
Peninsula, viz. (a) continental, which prevails, except in 
certain coast districts, from December to May, and is 
characterised by the prevalence of land winds, dry air, and 
large diurnal range of temperature ; (d) oceanic, from June 
to December, with a smaller diurnal range of temperature, 
dampness of the air, and more or less frequent rain. 

The climate of the southern districts of the Madras 
Presidency has been not inaptly summed up as being three 
months hot, and nine months hotter. As shown by the 
table, the mean temperature of the city of Madras is 
8g-6° F. during the hot month of May, and 76"2' F. in the 
"cold weather" month of January. 

The chief types of weather, and the periods during 
which they prevail in Madras and the Carnatic, have been 
classified as follows : 

(i) "Cold weather" — from the end of December to 
the end of February ; 

(2) Hot weather — from the beginning of March to 

the end of May ; 

(3) South-west monsoon — from the beginning of 

June to the first week in October; 

(4) North-east monsoon — from the second week in 

October to the third week in December. 



Temperatures recorded at ten stations. 


Height in 

feet above 


Mean Temperature in Degrees 




















447 ■ 



91 "4 














The word monsoon is derived from the Arabic mausim, 
meaning season, which was corrupted by the Portuguese 
into moncao, and by the Dutch into monssoyn or monssoen. 
The monsoons have been summed up as winds which blow 
alternately in opposite directions, and at opposite seasons 
of the year, i.e. blowing over the land from the Arabian 
Sea in the south-west, and from the Bay of Bengal in the 
north-east monsoon. 

During the " cold weather," the hottest area is in the 
southern districts of Trichinopoly, Madura, and Tinnevelly, 
and the coolest areas in the plains are in the three northern 
districts, Ganjam, Vizagapatam, and Godavari, and in 
Bellary, Anantapur, and Kurnool. At Ootacamund (7,000 


feet above sea-level), on the Nllgiri hills, and even at 
Wellington, nearly a thousand feet lower, light frosts 
occur in the cold months. Sometimes, in the early morn- 
ing, the valleys and hollows of the hills are covered with 

In January, showers fall, which are called Pongal 
showers, in reference to the Pongal (boiled rice) or San- 
kranti festival observed by Hindus on the first day of 
the month of Tai, commencing approximately on the 
1 2th January, when Hindus offer boiled rice and milk to 
propitiate the sun-god. The showers which fall in March 
and April are called blossom showers in the coffee-growing 
areas, and elsewhere mango showers, because they occur at 
the time when the mangoes are commencing to ripen. 

During March and April, the damp and enervating 
"long shore" winds blow from the south along the Madras 
coast. They are said to derive some of their moisture from 
having to pass through miles of space filled with fine spray 
thrown up into the air by the heavy surf that breaks on the 
coast at this season. These winds have been described by 
the author of Letters from Madras (1843), as "very dis- 
agreeable — a sham sea-breeze blowing from the south, 
whereas the real sea-breezes blow from the east. It is a 
regular cheat for the new-comer, feeling damp and fresh, as 
if it was going to cool them." The true sea-breeze is one 
which blows from the cool sea towards the heated land in 
the afternoon and evening, whereas the land wind blows 
from the cooled land to the warmer sea in the morning. 

During the hot weather, the hottest areas are the Ceded 
districts and the Deccan. Cuddapah takes rank as the 
hottest station in the Madras Presidency, with a mean 
temperature of 94"6° F. in May, The four Deccan districts 
— Cuddapah, Kurnool, Bellary, and Anantapur — which are 
in the dry zone, where the rainfall is slight, suffer more from 
famine than any others. 


The hot weather is varied, especially in and near the 
hills, by thunderstorms, which, in the plains, are preceded 
by strong- wind and clouds of dust. In May depressions 
sometimes form in the Bay of Bengal, and storms strike 
the coast. 

With the commencement of the south-west monsoon — 
commonly called " the rains " — which, under normal con- 
ditions, " bursts " during the first fortnight in June, the 
temperature falls on the west coast. The monsoon current 
strikes the coast almost at right angles, and discharges 
a very large quantity of rain in the plains between the 
Arabian Sea and the western ghats, and on the face of the 
ghats. The amount is, however, slight as compared with 
that which falls at Cherrapunji in Assam, where the annual 
rainfall is 400 — 500 inches. At Karkal, in South Canara, 
which is near the ghats, the average rainfall is 189 inches, 
and 239 inches were registered in 1897. Devala, in the 
Wynaad, averages 161 inches. At Mercara, in Coorg, the 
average fall is 133 inches, of which 42 inches fall in July. 
At Naduvatam, which is situated at the western extremity 
of the Nllgiri plateau, the average fall is 102 inches. At 
Ootacamund, which is some miles eastward of the ghats, 
and only 20 miles distant from Naduvatam by road, and 
much nearer as the crow flies, the rainfall averages only 
49 inches. Further east, at Coonoor, which receives its 
share of both the south-west and north-east monsoons, the 
average rainfall is 63 inches. During the south-west mon- 
soon, the periods of strong wind and heavy rain are separated 
by spells of fine weather, which are commonly known as 
breaks in the rains. In the plains of Tinnevelly, in the 
extreme south of the Peninsula, the south-west monsoon 
brings strong winds to the eastern side of the ghats, which 
blow great clouds of red dust, fifty or sixty feet high, from 
the plains towards the sea on the east coast. 

The south-west monsoon ceases towards the end of 


September. With its cessation, humidity is high, and there 
is an absence of breeze on the Madras coast, until the 
arrival of the north-east monsoon rains, which are due 
about the middle of October.' With the "burst" of the 
monsoon, the temperature drops suddenly. The rainfall is 
greatest along that part of the coast which lies between 
Pulicat lake and Point Calimere. But the annual rainfall 
is, as shown by the following statistics, far less on the east 
than on the west coast : 

Average annual 

rainfall, in inches 




east coast 

)5 J) 
5i 7> 



west coast 




The weather conditions over the Bay of Bengal during 
the north-east monsoon favours the formation of cyclones, 
the position and course of which determine the distribution 
of the rainfall. A cyclone {kvkXwv, whirling, from kvkXo<;, 
a circle) has been defined as "an atmospheric system, where 
the pressure is lowest in the centre. The winds in conse- 
quence tend to blow towards the centre, but, being diverted, 
according to Ferrel's law, they rotate spirally inwards in 
a direction contrary to the movement of the hands of a 
watch in the northern hemisphere, and the reverse in the 
southern hemisphere. The whole system has a motion of 
translation, being usually carried forward with the great 
wind drifts, like eddies upon a swift stream." The north- 
east monsoon cyclones as a rule fill up rapidly after passing 
inland from the coast, and rarely cross the peninsula to the 
Arabian Sea. In 1886, however, a storm, after it had done 
so, developed again into a severe cyclone. 

During a cyclone, in October 1746, when La Bour- 
donnais' fleet was off Madras, after the town had surrendered 



to the French, three of his ships and two prizes sank, and 
1,200 men were drowned. In 1782, more than a hundred 
native craft, which had brought supplies of rice to Madras 
for the thousands who had taken shelter there from Haidar 

Fig. 13. Chart showing diminishing pressure from the outskirts 
to the centre of a cyclonic storm. 

Ali's horsemen, were wrecked. During a cyclone, which 
struck Masulipatam in November 1864, a storm wave, 
thirteen feet above ordinary high-tide level, was borne 
inland seventeen miles from the coast 

A man who clung 




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first to a palmyra beam, and afterwards to a boat, was 
carried fourteen miles inland. Casks of beer and arrack 
from the Commissariat godown (warehouse) strewed the 
country for miles around. Dead bodies lay along the limit 
of the inundation, as sea-weed lies on a shore at high-water 
mark. At the crossings of the principal streets, the dead 
lay in heaps. Graves were dug, and the bodies thrown in 
— in one case ten men and a bullock in one grave. Some 
of the bodies were unearthed and eaten by herds of swine, 
and packs of marauding pariah dogs. Others were ex- 
humed and cremated, when a supply of dry firewood was 
available. The loss of life was estimated at 30,000, and 
there was great destruction of cattle. In May 1872, nine 
English ships, with an aggregate tonnage of 6.700 tons, 
and twenty native craft, were driven ashore at Madras. 
During a storm at Vizagapatam, in October 1876, the new 
iron dome of Mr Narasinga Rao's Observatory, which had 
not been rivetted down, was carried 33 feet. A cyclone, 
which struck Madras in November 1881, knocked over two 
Titan cranes, which were being used in connection with the 
harbour works, and washed away half a mile of the break- 

Daily records of the atmospheric pressure, direction of 
the wind, temperature, humidity, and rainfall, in the southern 
half of the Peninsula, and round the Bay of Bengal (in- 
cluding Burma and the Andamans), are issued by the 
Government Meteorologist in Madras. 



Quite nine-tenths of the area under consideration 
consists of an assemblage of crystalline rocks, similar to 
those which form the " basement complex " in many parts 
of the world. These rocks, being older than any known 
fossiliferous or known unaltered sedimentary rocks, are 
generally referred to as Archaean {arcJiaios, ancient ; arche, 
beginning). Resting on the weathered surface of these 
very ancient crystalline rocks there lie patches of unaltered 
sedimentary formations of different ages. The oldest of 
these occupy a considerable area in the Cuddapah and 
Kurnool districts. Similar strips of rocks very much 
younger than those of Cuddapah and Kurnool are pre- 
served at different places along the Coromandel margin of 
the Madras Presidency, as for instance in the TrichinopoJy 
district, near Pondicherry, around Madras, and at Rajah- 
mundry. There are also one or two very small patches 
of still younger marine rocks preserved on the Cochin- 
Travancore coast. Over all the formations — ancient 
crystalline basement, superimposed unfossiliferous sedi- 
mentary rocks, and geologically more recent fossiliferous 
formations — there lies a great mantle of modern laterite, 
with other decomposition products and cultivated soil. 

The Madras Presidency is a part of the old land surface 
of Peninsular India, which has remained stable and un- 
disturbed for untold geological ages. Except near the 
margins, there are no signs of the rocks having ever 
been depressed below sea-level ; no marine formations are 


preserved anywhere in this area, except at the places referred 
to above near the present sea-coast. As a consequence of 
this geological stability, and long-continued exposure to 
the erosive action of the weather, the physical inequalities 
which give that form of simple relief know as scenery are 
due merely to unequal resistance to weathering agents. 

The Archaean complex is composed of a great variety 
of very ancient igneous and sedimentary rocks, which have 
been in many cases so altered by heat and earth move- 
ments that it is now difficult in many cases to distinguish 
those which were originally laid down as sediments in 
water from those which were injected in a molten condition 
into pre-existing solid parts of the Earth's crust. All the 
rocks of this group have been buried at some time in their 
history to great depths in the Earth's crust, and have since 
been brought to the surface by the continued erosion of 
the overlying cover. They show a general disposition of 
their constituent minerals in bands and streaks, roughly 
imitating the fluidal structures of semi-molten and viscous 
bodies, which is due to the fact that they have been moulded 
under enormous pressure and at high temperatures in an 
early stage of the Earth's history. The rocks now exposed 
at the surface in Madras therefore form a sample of the 
kind of materials that still exist at depths in the Earth's 
crust so great that the pressure due to the overlying masses 
is sufficient to mould and knead like wax the strongest 
rock known. There is no direct proof that these folded or 
banded rocks in Madras, commonly known as gneisses and 
schists, are similar in age to the formations described as 
Archaean in Europe and America. They are, however, re- 
ferred to the Archaean era, because, throughout Peninsular 
India, as in other parts of the world, they underlie all other 
geological formations, and form a platform on which all 
later geological deposits were laid down. Among the 
constituents of this complex are great masses of ancient 













granites, now exposed over large areas in the Mysore 
State, and in the adjoining districts of Salem, North A root, 
and Bellary, These rocks, being compact and uniform in 
character, resist the weather more perfectly than the more 
complex gneisses and schists around. They consequently 
form conspicuous hillocks, standing up abruptly above the 
general level of the plains. Man)' of these, on account of 
their steep and difficult!}- accessible slopes, have been 

Fig. i6. Characteristic hillock of Granitic Gneiss, Salem district. 

Utilised in past times as forts and strongholds (driigs), such 
for example as that on which the old fort stands at 
Trichinopoly, Sankaridrug in the Salem district, and 
Nandidrug in the Mysore State. 

Another prevalent type among these ancient crystalline 
formations is a group of rocks similar to granite in having 
been intruded in the igneous condition, but distinguished 
from all other rocks of the same class under the name 
























If V 




** ' 





2 "5 


in o 



nJ oi 

-, '*^ 

1) .^ 


■!-> U 








V ^ 











,, '■ , 








■■ J 


-'( ■ 





; -c 


charnockite series. These rocks have been so named 
becanse the material originally described was quarried for 
the tombstone of Job Charnock, and others of the early- 
English settlers in Bengal. The charnockite series forms 
St Thomas' Mount near Madras, and other small hills further 
south in the Chingleput district. The same series of rocks 
form the Shevaroy hills, the great mountain masses known 
as the Nilgiris, and the range of hills trending south from 
the Nilgiris through the Malabar district, as well as the 
States of Cochin and Travancore, rising again above the 
sea-level to form the great central mass of Ceylon. The 
characteristic feature of these masses of charnockite is the 
formation of large plateau-like masses with undulating 
surfaces of a kind which permits, with slight artificial help, 
the formation of lakes, such as that near Yercaud on the 
Shevaroys, that of Ootacamund on the Nilgiris, Kodaikanal 
on the Palnis, and at Newara-Eliya in Ceylon. Some of 
these plateaux stand at elevations of 7000 to 8000 feet, 
where the climate and the vegetation are of a kind familiar 
to people who live in temperate climates. Thus, on the 
Nllgiri plateau, the undulating " downs " are covered with 
turf, and in places there occur well-developed peat-bogs, 
sometimes thick enough to be worked for supplies of fuel. 

Among the almost endless varieties of rocks forming 
the rest of the crystalline complex, we have those which 
include the deposits of corundum, steatite, and potstone ; 
the veins of coarse-grained granite or so-called pegmatite, 
which carry marketable mica, and similar veins which have 
yielded aquamarine in the Coimbatore district. 

Associated with the crystalline complex, there occurs a 
group of rocks which are separately distinguished as the 
Dharwar system on account of their exposure in the district 
of Dharwar on the north-western border of the Mysore 
State. The Dharwar system is composed of an assemblage 
of altered rocks of various origins, some of them very 























ancient sediments, others volcanic lava flows, and others 
intrusive igneous rocks, all greatly folded by earth move- 
ments, and altered by heat and pressure. They are im- 
portant, because they are sometimes traversed by veins 
carrying valuable metalliferous deposits, especially of gold 
and copper. The important gold mines of the Mysore 
State are worked in a patch of the Dharwar formation. 
The strata which cover such large areas in the Cuddapah 

Fig. 19. Cuddapah limestone, Kolab river, showing the honeycomb 
weathering and general flat-bedded disposition. 

and Kurnool districts are utterly different in character to 
those which have been grouped together under the name 
Archaean. They include ordinary sandstones, shales and 
limestones, which have been in places disturbed by earth 
movements, and have consequently been slightly folded, 
but they nowhere show signs of having been deeply buried 
in the Earth's crust, and are therefore practically unaltered. 
They are of a kind that might very well have been laid 


down as deposits in the sea, yet they are entirely devoid of 
all forms of organic remains. This absence of fossils may 
possibly be due to the fact that the Cuddapah and 
Kurnool formations were laid down at a period in the 
P2arth's history even older than that of the oldest of known 
fossiliferoLis deposits, possibly at a time when animals 
possessed no hard structures suitable for preservation as 
fossils. On account of the supposed great age of these 
formations in India, they have been grouped together under 
the name Parana, a term which not only indicates the fact 
that they are very much older than our familiar fossiliferous 
formations, but also suggests that they are very much 
younger than the Archaean schists and gneisses on which 
the Cuddapah and Kurnool sediments rest ; for, whilst the 
Puranas are reckoned as old among Hindu literature, they 
are in effect the reconstituted products of the still more 
ancient Vedas. 

There is another great gap in the geological record 
between the time during which the Cuddapah and Kurnool 
formations were laid down, and the period in which the 
next succeeding deposits were formed. These latter form 
a part of the Gondwana system, which is more con- 
spicuously developed in the northern portions of Peninsular 
India, where it includes the most valuable coal seams in 
the country. In the Madras Presidency the only repre- 
sentatives of the Gondwana system are small patches of 
shales and sandstones preserved in the Trichinopoly dis- 
trict, near Madras, in various parts of the Nellore district, 
and near the Godavari delta. The Gondwana system, 
where fully developed in North Peninsular India, is divided 
into two portions, the lower of which contains the principal 
coal seams, while the upper division, composed largely of 
sandstones and shales, is practically devoid of valuable 
coal. It is the upper division which is mainly represented 
along the east coast. Most of the rocks belonging to this 


system were laid down in great river valleys, but the 
patches of the upper division preserved near the Coro- 
mandel coast show by the fossils they contain estuarine 
and marine conditions of deposit. The lower coal-bearing 
division has been proved by borings to occur in the 
Godavari district, and is worked in the adjoining parts of 
the Nizam's Dominions. The Gondwana system includes 
rocks which range in age from those formed at about the 
same time as the Coal Measures in Europe to those which 
immediately preceded the English Chalk. In the Madras 
Presidency, near Pondicherry, as well as in the Trichinopoly 
district, there occur small patches of marine rocks of the 
Chalk period. These marine Cretaceous rocks were formed, 
not in the deep sea, but near the shore, and they, with the 
small areas of marine Gondwana rocks further north along 
the Coromandel coast, form the only records of the sea 
having made a serious inroad on the land in Southern 
India. Throughout a protracted geological era, India was 
connected with Central and South Africa, to form a great 
continent, which was separated from northern lands by an 
ocean then stretching across Central Europe and Asia. 
The northern shore-line of this continent, known to geolo- 
gists as Gondwanaland, was approximately along the line 
now occupied by the Central Himalayan snow-covered 
peaks, while the position of the south-eastern shore-line is 
indicated by the small patches of Gondwana and Cretaceous 
formations preserved along the Coromandel coast. Whilst, 
therefore, great geological changes have occurred in the 
north, very little change has occurred in the shore-line of the 
eastern coast, and Peninsular India, like Central and South 
Africa, has remained firm, while other areas were being 
profoundly altered by the crumpling of the Earth's crust. 
The Cretaceous beds of the Trichinopoly and Pondi- 
cherry areas are specially interesting on account of the 
great numbers of fossils which they contain, including 



many species of world-wide distribution, having been found 
in similar rocks in Africa, Europe, Brazil, the United States, 
British Columbia, Japan, and Australia. Of these, mention 
may be made of such well-known species as Schloenbachia 
iiijiata, AcantJioccras rJiotomagense, and PacJiy discus golle- 
villensis, which are forms of the extinct class of coiled-shell 




Fig. 20. Cretaceous Fossils. 

animals known as Ammonites; various gastropod mollusca 
like Tnrrilites costatus, and a gigantic form of Ccrithiuni 
often referred to as Nerinea ; lamellibranch molluscs, 
especially those related to the oyster family, like Alec- 
tryonia carinata, Iiioceramus labiatus, Trigonoarca galdrina, 


Plicatula septeincosta, and Spondylus ariyabireiisis; different 
varieties of "lamp-shells," including TerebrattUa biplicata; 
and members of the star-fish family, like Heniiaster. 

The geological record becomes broken again after the 
formation of these marine Cretaceous beds, and the only- 
records we have of geological events during the Tertiary 
period are those which formed around the coast bands of 
sandstone, which have been named after the town of 
Cuddalore, the head-quarters of the South Arcot district. 
The exact age of these so-called Cuddalore sandstones is 
not known, for they contain only fragmentary and un- 
recognisable traces of organic remains. 

About the most widespread geological formation in 
South India is the great mantle of laterite, which is geo- 
logically recent in age. Laterite is of special interest to 
the student of Madras Geology, because it was in this 
area that the formation was first described in 1807 by 
Dr Francis Buchanan-Hamilton, who gave it its name from 
the Latin word later, a brick, in allusion to the way in 
which it can be convenient!)' cut into brick-shaped blocks 
for building purposes. The same formation has been since 
found in other parts of the world more or less confined to 
the humid portions of the tropical belt, and various con- 
flicting theories have been suggested to account for its 
origin. Most observers, however, agree that its peculiar 
characters are due to the special conditions of weathering 
which take place in a moist warm climate. Nearly all 
laterites are rusty red in colour, on account of the diffused 
ferruginous products, but the essential feature in which it 
differs from all ordinary rock-weathering products is due to 
the fact that, instead of consisting largely of ordinary clay, 
which is a hydrous silicate of alumina, it contains the 
alumina largely in a free state, thus resembling in consti- 
tution the material known as bauxite, which is used as 
the main source of aluminium. Thus, some of the deposits 

T- 5 



of laterite in India might ultimately prove to be of com- 
mercial value as sources of the metal aluminium. They, 
however, differ greatly in qualit)- from place to place, and 
in many cases have been mixed up with other detrital 

The fragmentary nature of the record of geological 
history in the Madras Presidency is shown by comparing 
the following list of formations with the table of European 
systems of strata. 

Laterite and modern alkuiuni, beaches and coral | ^ 

banks (■ recent 

Cuddalore sandstones and Warkalli beds 

Trichinopoly and Pondicherry formations 
(jondwana system 

Not represented in Southern India 


■{ Miocence 



) Jurassic 
I Triassic 

/ Permian 
1 Carboniferous | "5 






I Cambrian 

r v 


Cuddapah and Kurnool formations (Purana group) Algonkian 

Dharwar system, Charnockite series, Granites, I a v, 
Gneisses, and Schists ... ... ... ... ( 



In the preceding chapter, some of the minerals which 
are met with in the various geological formations have been 
mentioned. It remains to deal more in detail with the most 
important minerals in the area under consideration. 

Asbestos, which received its name, meaning unquench- 
able, from the Greeks, because it is unaltered by heat, is 
found in abundance in the Chamrajnagar taluk of the 
Mysore State. It is a variety of hornblende, which occurs 
in long silky fibres, and was, in days of old, used at the 
cremation of the dead, so that the ashes of the corpse 
might be kept distinct from those of the fuel. It is at the 
present day used for lining iron safes, as a packing for 
steam-pipes and boilers, and, when short-fibred, for the 
manufacture of paper and cardboard. 

The Beryl or Aquamarine mines at Padiyur (Pattalai) 
in the Dharapuram taluk of the Coimbatore district were 
worked in the early part of the last century by Josiah 
Marshall Heath, who secured 2,196 stones valued at i^i20o. 
The discovery of coins of the Roman Emperors Augustus, 
Tiberius, Claudius, and others, in the neighbourhood, has 
been used as evidence that there was considerable com- 
merce between the ancient inhabitants of the locality and 
the Roman traders. It is recorded by Pliny, in his NaUiral 
History, that the best beryls, which he recognised as being 
a variety of the emerald, are those which (like those at 
Padiyur) have the green colour of pure sea-water, and come 
from India. 



Chromite has a chemical constitution analogous to mag- 
netite (magnetic iron-ore), but differs from it in composition 
by the replacement of a portion of the iron oxide by 
chromic oxide. It is frequently found associated with the 
igneous rocks, such as the olivine rocks, which also contain 
large quantities of magnesia. In this association it is 
found in various parts of South India. An attempt was 
made by Mr Heath to work the chromite found associated 
with magnesite in the low hills between the town of Salem 
and the Shevaroy hills, the white colour of which has given 

Fig. 21. Beryl crystals. 

rise to the inaccurate name of the "Chalk Hills." The 
chromite deposits of the Mysore State first received serious 
consideration in 1906, when licenses were granted for their 
exploitation, which, however, does not appear yet to have 
developed into a regular industry, although the amount 
raised in 1907 was 11,000 tons. As in the Salem district, 
the chromite of Mysore is found associated with ultra-basic 
rocks, such as olivine rock and the product of its alteration, 
serpentine. The most important deposits known appear to 
be those situated near the village of Kadakola in the 
Mysore district, but other occurrences have been detected 


in the Hassan and Shimoga districts. Chromite is the 
principal natural source of chrome compounds, and the 
largest portion of the mineral raised is devoted to the 
manufacture of the salts of chromium used as dyes and 
pigments, and in tanning operations. A smaller fraction 
is devoted to the manufacture of refractory chrome bricks 
for lining furnaces, and of chrome steels, which are 
largely used for armour-plating on account of their great 

Copper ore was discovered in a vein near the village of 
Yerrapulli in the Nellore district in 1801. Large sums of 
money were lost in mining operations in the first half of 
the last century. It is worthy of note that the ore is 
associated with rocks which resemble in geological relation- 
ship and lithological characters those known as the Lower 
Huronian in America, which are referred in India to the 
Dharwar system of rocks, in which the gold deposits are 
also found. 

The Corundum (Sanskrit, korniid), of which extensive 
deposits occur in South India, lacks the gem lustre of the 
rubies of Burma and blue sapphires {jiilaui) of Kashmir, 
which are varieties of this mineral. Ranking in hardness 
next to the diamond, it is in demand as an abrading 
agent in metal-work and stone-cutting in India and other 
countries. It is the richest natural compound of the metal 
aluminium, but, on account of its physical characters, is 
not suitable to replace bauxite as a source of the metal. 
Its distribution in Southern India has recently been syste- 
matically surveyed, more especially in the Coimbatore and 
Salem districts, and in Mysore. The mineral occurs in a 
great variet}- of forms, such, for example, as lumps of a 
grey, greenish-grey, or flesh-colour, or purplish-brown 
hexagonal prisms, often found as large crystals in a matrix 
of finely granular felspar. In some places, e.g. at Karuta- 
palaiyam in Coimbatore, mining or digging out of corundum 



is an active industry on a small scale, and the waste-lands 
are taken up for the purpose. At Gopichettipalaiyam, in 
the same district, the mineral is collected in isolated crystals 
in the fields, and sold to a contractor from Madras. 

Diamond-mining was an important industry in the 
Kistna district in the days when the Kings of Golconda 


?'■*'■ '^1 


Fig. 22. Crystal of Corundum with its shell of cleared felspar 
forming the crystal "court" or crystal "compound." 

ruled over it. The French traveller Tavernier, who visited 
the Kollur mines in the seventeenth century, records that 
6o,ooo men were engaged therein. He mentions a diamond 
weighing 280 carats as being in the possession of the 
Moghul Emperor AurangzTb. This gem was probably the 
Koh-i-nur (mountain of light), which is now among the 


crown jewels of Engiancl, having been presented to Queen 
Victoria on the annexation of the Punjab in 1849. Accord- 
ing to tradition, this diamond was found near the Kistna 
river, and worn five thousand years ago by one of the heroes 
of the Mahabharata. The Regent or Pitt diamond, pur- 
chased in 1704 when Mr Thomas Pitt was Governor of 
Madras, is said to have been found at Partiala in the Kistna 
district. It was subsequently set in the hilt of the State 
sword worn by Napoleon. Pitt is said to have purchased 
the diamond for ;^2O,40o, and sold it to the King of France 
for five times as much. Concerning the transaction, 
Alexander Pope wrote the following lines in his Epistle to 
Lord Bathurst : — 

"Asleep and naked as an Indian lay, 
An honest factor stole a gem away ; 
He pledged it to the knight, the knight had wit, 
So kept the diamond, and the rogue was bit." 

In the Chauncey MS. the last line runs, 

" So robbed the robber, and was rich as P ." 

The village of Wajrakarur {vajra, diamond) in the Anan- 
tapur district is celebrated for its diamonds, which are said 
to be frequentl}- picked up in the fields after heavy rain by 
villagers, who sell them to brokers. In 1881, a diamond, 
facetiously called the Gor-do-norr after Mr Gordon Orr 
the Madras jeweller, of which the original weight was 
6"]^ carats, was found by a villager, and sold to the Nizam 
of Hyderabad for Rs 1,65,000. Diamond mines were 
worked in former days at Banganapalle, Munimadugu, and 
Ramallakota in Kurnool. 

By far the largest output of Indian Gold is obtained 
from the mines in the Kolar district of Mysore. The 
metal is derived from a single free-milling vein or reef of 
blue quartz, which averages only some four feet in thick- 
ness, and yields gold in paying quantities for a little more 






than four miles. The attention of lun-opeans was called 
to the vein by the existence of numerous old native 
workings. A shaft was sunk by Mr Lavelle as far back as 
1875, but it was not till 1883 that Captain Plummer struck 
the Champion lode, the discovery of which laid the founda- 
tion of the ultimate success of the Kolar gold-field, on 
which numerous Companies, including Champion Reef, 
Mysore, Nundidroog, and Ooregum, have been established. 
By 1903, the deepest working was more than 3,000 feet 
below the surface. The gold is extracted from the quartz 
by a combination of amalgamation and treatment with 
potassium c)'anide. The tailings, or powdered refuse of 
the stamped ore, are heaped up in big mounds, and are 
sometimes treated a second time, to secure such gold as 
still remains in them. The mines have, since 1902, been 
supplied with electric power from the Cauvery falls, which 
are 92 miles distant. An attempt to establish a gold- 
mining industry in the Nllgiri Wynaad between 1880 and 
1884 ended in financial disaster. The machinery sent out 
from England may still be seen, covered by jungle, or lying 
on the roadside. A slender living is made in various 
localities by a class of people called Jalagadugu {Jala, 
water ; gaditgit, wash), who extract gold from the bed of 
rivers or nullahs (watercourses). The Kurumbas of the 
Nllgiris also obtain small quantities of gold by alluvial 
washing. In the city of Madras, gold-washers search for 
gold in the drains near jewellers' shops. 

Graphite, plumbago, or blacklead, which, like the 
diamond, is a form of carbon, is worked on a commercial 
scale in the Nedumangad and Neyyattinkara taluks of 
Travancore, and in the Bhadrachalam taluk of the Goda- 
vari district. Graphite of good quality further occurs in 
the Singampatti zamindari of Tinnevell}^ In its purest 
form, the mineral is the material from which lead pencils 
are made, and it is also used for polishing grates and 



pottery, for the manufacture of crucibles, and as a lubricant 
for machinery. 

The smelting of Iron by primitive methods has been 
carried out by Indians from very early times, and old- 
fashioned furnaces may still be found at work in remote 
places, where imported iron and steel are not available. 
An interesting fact is that the earthen crucibles used at the 
present day correspond both in size and shape with those 

Fig. 24. Pariahs smelting small "blooms" of wrought iron, 

Salem district. 

which were discovered during the excavations at the ancient 
burial-place at Aditanallur. The wootz steel, made in the 
Trichinopoly district and other localities, has long been 
celebrated, and it has been conjectured that the famous 
Damascus sword-blades were manufactured from it. In 
1830, an Iron Company was established by Mr Heath at 
Porto Novo in the South Arcot district, with a view to 
manufacture bar iron from the indigenous ores, but the 


enterprise ended in failure, after a struggle extending over 
many years. Quartz-iron-ore schists form thick bands of 
considerable dimensions in the Salem district, the Mysore 
State, etc., but it has not as yet been found possible to 
work them on a large commercial scale. And, for the 
present, the iron industry remains confined to native 
" bloomeries." 

Magnesite (carbonate of magnesium) occurs in the form 
of white veins in the olivine rocks in the " Chalk Hills " of 
the Salem district. The white deposit is believed to be 
made up of the bones of the mythological bird Jatayu, 
which fought with Ravana to rescue Sita from his clutches. 
During the last few years the average production of the 
mineral has been 2,254 tons pei* annum. As it is of unusual 
purity, it is likely to be useful for the manufacture of 
plaster, tiles, etc., and also in refractory linings for furnaces, 
and as a dephosphorising agent in the steel industry. 

Of the various ores of Manganese, psilomelane and 
braunite form the bulk of the ores exported from India. 
A rapid development in the mining or quarrying of these 
ores has taken place within the last few years. The 
industry in the Vizagapatam district had its origin in 
1891, when Mr H. G. Turner, the Collector of the district, 
noticed that railway contractors were breaking up blocks 
of manganese-ore for ballast. As a result, the Vizianagram 
Mining Company was floated. In 1905, the deposit of 
manganese-ore at Ramandrug in the Sandur State was 
opened up, and a monopoly of the manganese and iron 
ores of the State secured by the General Sandur Mining 
Company. In the following year, the Mysore Manganese 
Company was formed, to take over concessions in the 
Shimoga district, and its success led to a rush for man- 
ganese concessions in several districts of the Mysore State. 
When in hard, compact masses, the ore is hand-drilled, 
and blasted. Otherwise it is simpl)' prized out with 



crowbars. The huge blocks thus detached are broken up 
with sledge-hammers, and carried up the hill, or out of the 
quarry, on the heads of coolies. The ore, which is exported 
to England, the United States, and Germany, is utilised 

Fig. 25. Manganese quarry, Kodur, Vizagapatam district. 

in the manufacture of iron and steel. The ore has been 
used in India, from remote times, for colouring glass and 
enamels. At the present day it is also used for imparting 
a dark colour to tiles and biscuit-ware. 



Mica, which is obtained in large quantities from the 
Nellore mines, occurs in the form called xn-wscovW-Q. {yitrinvi 
muscoviticum or Muscovy glass), owing to its use in Russia 
in place of glass for windows. The ancient Hindu writers 
recognised four classes of mica, corresponding to the four 
castes of Manu, viz.. Brahman, white ; Kshatriya, red- 
tinted (ruby mica) ; Vaisya, yellow ; Siidra, black. The 

Fig. 26. Mica crystals in the rock. Inikurti quarry, Nellore district. 

mineral in Nellore, which is characterised by a greenish 
tinge, forms a constituent of the granite pegmatites, mainly 
composed, like ordinary granite, of quartz, felspar, and 
mica, in which the crystals have developed on a gigantic 
scale. Crystals or "books" of mica have, in fact, been 
obtained from the Nellore mines, measuring 10 feet across 
the basal plane, and rectangular sheets, free from cracks 


and flaws, sometimes measure as much as 30 x 24 inches. 
The mineral is worked in wide, open quarries, distributed 
among the four mining zones of Gudur, Rapur, Atmakur, 
and Kavali, and bearing, in some cases, the name of a Hindu 
deity, e.g. Venkateswara and Mahalakshmi. Mica com- 
mands a special price in the commercial market, because it 
is a non-conductor of electricity, is able to stand great heat 
and rapid changes of temperature, is transparent to light, 
almost opaque to radiant heat, and is tough and elastic. 
This combination of features is not obtained in any other 
natural substance, and cannot be readily imitated arti- 
ficially. Consequently, mica is used in covering the arma- 
tures of dynamos, as lamp chimneys, as coverings for the 
peep-holes of high temperature furnaces, for photographic 
films, and for window-panes in places exposed to great 
changes of temperature or violent vibrations. In India 
there is a demand for mica at the Muhammadan Mohurram 
festival for the decoration of taziahs or taboots, pro- 
cessional lamps, banners, etc. Waste scrap and pulverised 
mica are used for a variety of purposes, such as non-con- 
ducting packings and jackets for boilers and steam-pipes, 
the manufacture of lubricants for machinery, and as a base 
for soap. The invention of micanite has created an opening 
for the use of the smaller grades of mica, which were 
formerly discarded as waste. Of the world's total supply 
of mica, over 60 per cent, by value is obtained from India, 
more than a quarter of the Indian production being from 
the Madras Presidency. Over 7,000 workers are employed 
on an average daily at the Madras mica mines. 

Since 1908, considerable attention has been paid to 
certain beach sands on the Travancore coast, which have 
been found to contain considerable proportions of Monazite, 
samples of which have yielded, on analysis, 12 per cent, of 
thoria, the substance that gives it its commercial value on 
account of its highly incandescent properties. The deposits 



are still being prospected, and 2 cvvt. of the material have 
been sent for analysis to the Tata Institute, Bangalore. 

Salt or "common salt" (chloride of sodium), the produc- 
tion of which is a Government monopoly, is manufactured, 
under the supervision of the Salt Department, in factories 
on the shores of the Bay of Bengal and Gulf of Manaar 
by concentrating sea-water in shallow evaporating pans 
formed by levelling and embanking the ground. In the 
Ceded Districts, and especially in Bellary, mounds of earth, 
called modas, survive as memorials of the days when the 
Upparas (salt-workers) manufactured earth-salt from saline 
soils, for consumption by the poorer classes and cattle. 

Saltpetre or nitre (nitrate of potassium) is manufactured, 
under license from the Salt Department, by lixiviating the 
nitrous efflorescence in the soil, and subsequently refining 
it, to free it from sodium chloride and other impurities. 
The greater part of the refined mineral is produced in the 
Coimbatore and Trichinopoly districts. 

Samarskite, the chief importance of which lies in the 
fact that it contains radium, has recently been discovered 
in the Nellore mica area. 

Steatite (hydrous silicate of magnesium), or soapstone, 
as it is called owing to its greasy feel, occurs of good 
quality near the village of Mudvaram, seven miles from 
Betamcherla in the Kurnool district, where there are ex- 
cavations in the dolomite (carbonate of magnesium and 
calcium) rock containing thin layers of the mineral. 
Articles for domestic use, and carved idols, are made from 
it in various districts. The mineral is used commercially 
for making gas-burners, electrical insulators, lining for 
stoves, etc. 

Of the Crystalline rocks which are used for building 
purposes, the most beautiful are the porphyries from Cha- 
mundi hill, Seringapatam, and other localities, which have 
been used as ornamental stones in the new palace of the 


Maharaja at Mysore. At Bangalore, the quarrying of the 
rock which is largely used as a building stone, for walls, 
posts for huts, etc., by means of a wood fire, which detaches 
large plates, has been carried to great perfection. Attention 
has recently been paid to the possibilities of the purple 
norite, which forms large masses in the hills of south-west 
Coorg, as an ornamental stone. The pink sandstone from 
Ramapuram, about 40 miles north of Madras, has been used 
with excellent effect in the building of the Victoria Memorial 
Hall, Madras. The white, grey, and flesh-coloured lime- 
stones from the Madukarai beds near Coimbatore are 
eminently adapted for ornamental purposes, and have been 
utilised in the church at Coimbatore. The white variety 
is used for drinking-troughs for animals. The so-called 
Trichinopoly marble, which is largely made up of fossil 
univalve and bivalve shells, takes a fine polish, and is 
valuable as a decorative stone. White limestone from the 
Kistna district, out of which the sculptured railing of the 
Amaravati stupa was carved, and the dark limestone from 
the Narji quarries, which provides the building-stones 
known as Cuddapah slabs, are largely used for mosaic 
floorings. The limestones of the Kistna and Kurnool 
districts have been used as lithographic stones. Chunam 
(lime), made of calcined shells, when specially prepared, 
produces a fine plaster, known as polished chunam, which 
has a shining white surface like polished marble. 

On the west coast, laterite, cut into big bricks, is largely 
used in the construction of houses. 

A fine clay, which is found in various places in South 
Canara, especially along the Netravati river, supplies the 
material from which the well-known Mangalore tiles are 
made. Clays, and kaolin (china-clay) produced by the 
decomposition of the felspar of granite, occur in many 
districts, and are used in the manufacture of pottery and 













Lapidary work is carried on at Settipalaiyam, a village 
near Tiruppur in the Coimbatore district, where rock- 
crystal ( quartz j spectacles, beads, lingas, figures of the 
elephant god Ganesa, etc., are made. The crystals are 
ground on emery discs made with powdered corundum. At 
Vallam in the Tanjore district, rock-crystals are collected 
by lapidaries, and cut into a variety of articles, such as 
brooch-stones, watch-glasses, and double-convex spectacles. 
The purple amethyst crystals found at Vallam are sent to 
Settipalai}'am to be polished. 

Quantity and Value of the principal minerals produced 
in Southern India, 1906 — 10. 

Gold (Mysore). 





















Average 546,307 2,094,600 

1 Including 2,532 ounces, valued at ^10,120, produced in the 
Anantapur district of Madras. 

Graphite (Travancore). 


























Magnesite (Madras). 























Manganese Ore (Madras and Mysore). 





























Mica (Madras). 












Salt (Madras), 









The mineral kingdom, it has been said, includes not 
only the mineral products belonging to our own earth, but 
also those, called meteorites, which belong to outer space, 
and have fallen from the sky. About a dozen or more 
meteorite falls have been recorded in Southern India, and 
in this area, as in the rest of India, a very small proportion 

Fig. 28. Parnallee meteorite. 


are meteoric irons, two only of this kind having been 
detected, namely those which fell at Nedagolla (4,280 
grams), and at Kodaikanal (2,355 grams). There is no 
record of the actual fall of the Kodaikanal meteorite. But 
a large meteor was seen to burst over the Pillar Rocks 
near that place a few years prior to the discovery of the 
meteorite, and it is possible that it fell at that time. Of 
the stony meteorites, the largest recorded is that which fell 
at Parnallee in 1857, and weighs 60,941 grams. Two 
meteorites, large and small, fell within a few seconds of, 
and about three miles apart from each other. The noise, 
which appears to have been heard at Tuticorin forty miles 
off, sounded like two claps of thunder. Many of the 
villagers worshipped the stones, some supposing that they 
were gods, or had been brought from the sea by the 
incantations of a Brahman, others that they had been shot 
from cannon on a ship. 




According to the classification of Wallace, South 
India is united with the island of Ceylon in the same zoo- 
geographical province — the sub-region of Ceylon and 
South India ; and, among Mammals which are peculiar 
thereto, are the loris, several members of the genus Pres- 
bytis {Semnopitheais : langurs), the Malayan genus Tupata 
(tree-shrews), and Platacanthoniys (Malabar spiny-mouse). 

The Mammals range in size from the elephant {Elep/ias 
inaxiiniis) to the Indian pigmy shrew {Crocidiu^a perotteti), 
one of the smallest existing Mammals. 


Excluding man {Homo sapiens), the Primates are 
represented by various monkeys, and one of the lemurs — 
the tailless slender loris, whose eyes are used in the 
preparation of a potent charm. The monkeys include the 
wanderoo, which has a ruff of long hairs encircling the 
head ; the bonnet-monkey, which is trained to do tricks, 
and is frequenth' exhibited about the streets; the langur or 
sacred Hanuman monkey; and the Malabar and Nllgiri 

The Carnivora, or flesh-eaters, are divided into three 
sections, viz., yEluroidea (cats), Cynoidea (dogs), and 
Arctoidea (bears). 

Of the ^luroidea, the largest are the tiger, leopard or 
panther {Felis pardns), hunting leopard {Cynceluriis jiibatiis: 
chlta or cheeta), and the striped hyaena. Black leopards, 
in which the spots are clearly visible if the skin is viewed 
in the proper light, are not uncommon. They have been 
regarded by some writers as a distinct species, but the 
occurrence of black and ordinary cubs in the same litter 
has been repeatedly recorded. The hunting leopard is 
easily tamed, and trained to hunt antelopes. The fishing 
cat is so named, because it haunts the banks of rivers and 
tidal creeks, and feeds partly on fish. The Malabar civet- 
cat is kept in confinement, and reared for the sake of its 
odorous secretion, which is used for perfume and medicinal 
purposes. The palm-civet or toddy-cat receives its name 
from its liking, real Or imaginary, for palm juice or toddy. 
The jungle-cat {Fells chaits) is often seen in the neighbour- 
hood of villages, and sometimes in towns. Of the mun- 
gooses, the best known is the common mungoose, which is 
carried about by jugglers, to have combats with cobras. 
The caracal or red lynx is now a rare animal. 

The Cynoidea, or dogs, include the Indian wild dog 
{Cyon duk/nmensls), which hunts in packs, and lives on deer, 
and wild pigs; the wolf; the little Indian fox; and the 


jackals, who make night hideous with what Baldjeus called 
their " hellish concert." The jackal performs useful duties 
as a scavenger, and affords sport to the members of the 
Ootacamund and Madras hunts. 

The Arctoidea, or bears, comprise the Indian marten ; 
the ratel or honey-badger, which is called the grave-digger, 
because, like the jackal, it has the reputation of digging 
into graves, and feeding on the corpses ; the various otters, 
which live on the banks of rivers and backwaters ; and the 
black sloth bear. 

The small order of Insectivora, or insect-eaters, includes 
the hedgehog, the Madras tree-shrew, and several species of 
shrew, of which the best known is the grey musk-shrew, 
commonly called the musk-rat. The musk-shrew diffuses 
a strong musky odour, and used to be supposed to affect 
bottled beer by running over the bottles in the cellar. 

The Chiroptera, or bats, have the forelimbs modified 
into wings, formed by a membranous expansion of skin 
between the elongated fingers. They are divided into two 
classes, viz., fruit-eaters and insect-eaters. The former are 
represented by the flying-foxes or fox-bats, which roost in 
colonies head downwards on trees, to the branches of 
which they hook themselves. They may be seen in 
thousands near the Jain quarters at Mudabidire in South 
Canara, having, it is said, discovered that the Jains do not 
harm any animals. Among the insect-eaters are the 
large-eared vampire bats, and the pretty painted bat, 
which hides itself in the folded leaf of the plantain. 

The Rodents, or gnawing animals, are represented by 
the porcupines, which are very destructive to crops, vege- 
tables, and rubber plantations; hares; rats; mice; and 
squirrels, which include the beautiful Malabar squirrel, and 
the common striped or palm-squirrel, whose irritating shrill 
voice is familiar to those who live in the plains. A cam- 
paign has been organised, in recent years, against rats, as 



they harbour the tropical rat-flea {Xenopsylla cheopis), 
which is an active disseminator of plague. The size of 
the bandicoot or pig rat, which prowls about houses, was 
greatly exaggerated by early travellers. Thus Friar Jor- 
danus wrote, about 1330 A.D., that "there be some rats as 
big as foxes and venomous exceedingly." 

The Ungulata, or hoofed animals, are represented by 
two sub-orders, viz., {a) the proboscidea, or animals with 

Fig. 29. Elephant with baby. 

a big trunk or proboscis; {b) artiodact)'la, or even-toed 
ungulates, which have the two central hoofs of each foot 
equal in size, and are divided into the pigs, and ruminants, 
or animals which chew the cud (oxen, deer, etc.). 

The Proboscidea have a single representative in the 
elephant, which is captured in pits, or driven into enclosures 
called keddahs, and tamed for use in dragging timber, for 
carrying baggage, and for ceremonial purposes at temples 




















or the palaces of Rajas. The term must (drunk) is appHed 
to male elephants during their periods of excitement. 
The Government, it may be noted, pays rewards for the 
destruction of solitary rogue elephants, tigers, leopards, 
bears, and wolves. 

Fig. 31. Gaur or "Bison." 

The Ruminants include the sambar deer ; spotted deer 
or chltal ; muntjac, rib-faced, or barking deer (often called 
the jungle sheep); the little chevrotain or mouse-deer; the 
nilgai, or blue-bull ; gazelle or chinkara ; four-horned 
antelope; Indian antelope or black-buck; Nilgiri wild goat 


(the "ibex" of sportsmen); the gaur or "bison"; wild 
buffalo; and the zebu or humped domestic ox. 

Of the Edentata, or toothless mammals, there is only 
a single species, the scaly ant-eater or pangolin, wrongly 
called the armadillo, which burrows in the ground by 
means of its strong claws, and feeds mainly on ants, 
especially " white-ants," which it licks up with its extensile 
sticky tongue. 

Among marine mammals, the Cetacea are represented 
by the whales and porpoises, and the Sirenia (sirens) by 
the dugong. 

In 1864 a whale was cast on shore at Masulipatam, the 
old name of which place (Machlipatan, or fish towm) is said 
to have been derived from a whale which was stranded 
there in the first half of the eighteenth century. The 
Madras Museum possesses the skeleton of a baleen or 
whalebone whale, about 48 feet in length, which was cast 
ashore near Mangalore in South Canara in 1874. The 
whalebone consists of a series of flattened horny plates on 
each side of the palate. The museum also possesses the 
skull of a toothed cachalot or sperm whale, which was 
washed ashore at Madras in 1890. This whale has a very 
wade range of distribution, being found in tropical seas, and 
as far as the polar regions. The oil contained in a cavity 
above the skull yields spermaceti, and the thick covering 
of blubber, which envelops the body, produces the sperm 
oil of commerce. Ambergris, which is used in perfumery, 
is a concretion found in the intestine. 

The porpoises or dolphins usually travel about in herds 
or schools, and may often be seen out at sea along the 
coast, and in the tidal backwaters of the west coast, where 
they open into the sea. 

The dugong, called in Tamil the sea-pig, is an inhabi- 
tant of the Gulf of Manaar, where it browses on sea-grasses. 
There is a tradition at Pamban that a box of money was 


once found in the stomach of one of these animals, which 
was caught off that town. 

Of the vast host of Birds which inhabit the plains, the 
hills, and the sea-shore, it is only possible to give a very 
brief summary. The birds are divided into twenty-one 
well-defined groups or orders, as follows : 

1. Game-birds — peacock, jungle-fowl, spur-fowl, par- 
tridge, and quail. 

2. Sand-grouse — painted and common sand-grouse. 

3. Hemipodes — bustard-quail and button-quail. 

4. Pigeon tribe — pigeons and doves. 

5. Rail-like birds — banded rail, crake, water-hen, moor- 
hen, etc. 

6. Grebe — the little grebe or dabchick, which inhabits 
lakes and tanks, on the hills and in the plains. 

7. Gull tribe — sea-gulls and terns. 

8. Plover tribe — curlew, plover, jacana, lapwing, bus- 
tard, oyster-catcher, sandpiper, stint, woodcock, snipe. 

9. Crane-like birds — crane. 

10. Heron tribe — ibis, spoonbill, stork, adjutant, heron, 
egret, bittern. The white herons which frequent rice-fields 
are commonly called paddy-birds. 

11. Duck tribe — goose, duck, sheldrake, teal. 

12. Flamingoes — flamingo. 

13. Pelicans and their allies — pelican, cormorant, 

14. Vultures, eagles, hawks — vulture, eagle, harrier, 
buzzard, sparrow-hawk, kestril kite. Of the kites, the best 
known are the pariah kite, which frequents kitchens, and the 
Brahminy kite, which is regarded with some veneration by 

15. Owls — horned owl, screech owl, spotted owlet 
{^Athene braina), etc. 

16. Parrot tribe — parroquet, loriquet. 

17. Picarian birds — swift, edible-nest swiftlet, night-jar, 


frog-mouth, roller or "blue jay" of Europeans, bee-eater, 
kingfisher, hornbill, hoopoe. 

1 8. Trogon tribe — Malabar trogon. 

19. Cuckoo tribe — cuckoo, coucal or crow-pheasant. 
The koel, whose plaintive cry, " ku-il, ku-il," is familiar to 
dwellers in the plains in the hot weather, lays its eggs in 
the nests of crows. 

20. Woodpeckers and their allies — woodpecker, bar- 
bet. The crimson-breasted barbet is commonly called the 
coppersmith, from its cry " took, took," which resembles 
the sound produced by hammering copper. 

21. Perching birds, which include all the song-birds, 
and are divided into singing and songless birds — crow, 
thrush, buibul, babblers (seven brothers or sat bhai, etc.), 
drongos (which include the king-crow), tailor-bird, weaver- 
bird, shrike, myna, magpie-robin, sparrow, flower-pecker, 
and very many others. A crow's nest in the Madras 
Museum is made of the wires from soda-water bottles 
interwoven, and lined inside with grass. 

Some migratory birds only visit the south of the pen- 
insula in the cool season. Of these the best known is the 
pin-tail snipe {Gallinago steiiura), which is found, not only 
on the plains, but also at high elevations. Other temporary 
residents in the low-country include the ruddy sheldrake 
or Brahminy duck {Casarca rutila), common teal {Ncttiiuii 
crecca), blue-winged teal {QHerq?iedtila circia), and black- 
naped oriole {Oriolits indicus). Among the migratory birds 
of the Nilgiris are the peregrine falcon {Falco peregrinus), 
marsh-harrier {Circus (zriiginosiis), sparrow-hawk {Accipiter 
nisus), wood-snipe {Gallinago nemoricola), and woodcock 
{Scolopax riisticola). The course, which migrator}' birds 
follow, may sometimes be fixed by identifying those which 
are killed by striking against lighthouses. In this way, the 
large hawk-cuckoo {Hierococcyx sparverioides), an inhabitant 
of the Himalayas, which is a cold-weather visitor to the 


Nllgiris, was killed by striking against the Santapilly 
lighthouse on the Vizagapatam coast on October 28th, 

Among the innocuous Snakes, are the burrowing or 
blind snake ; freshwater and sand-snakes ; the rat-snake 
{Zainenis inucosus); tree-snakes {DendropJiis pictiis and 
Passerita uiycterizans); and the python or rock-snake 
{PytJioii jnolurus), often called the anaconda, which grows 
to a length of 20 feet or more. A python, apparently not 
exceeding 8 feet in length, has been said, on trustworthy 
evidence, to have swallowed a young antelope. 

The venomous colubrine snakes include the hooded 
cobra {Naia tripiidians) and snake-eating hamadryad {Naia 
biuigarns), which grows to a length of 13 feet; the krait 
{Bungarits ctErideus) ; and the sea-snakes {HydropJiidcB), 
which have a flat paddle-shaped tail. The venom of sea- 
snakes has been said to be more virulent than that of any 
land snake, though deaths from their bite are infrequent. 

The venomous viperine snakes include the Russell's 
or chain-viper ( Vipera russcllii) ; the small Echis cariiiata ; 
several hill species of Triineresjiriis\ and Ancistrodon 
hypnalc, called the karawala. The vipers have a pair of 
canaliculate or channelled fangs, which conve}' the venom 
from the poison-gland by means of an orifice near the 
sharp point of the fang to the puncture made in the skin of 
the human being or animal bitten. 

The snakes, other than sea-snakes, which are known to 
inflict bites fatal to man, are the cobra, hamadryad, Russell's 
viper, krait, and Echis carinata. 

Other reptiles are represented by the marine turtles, 
land and freshwater tortoises, crocodiles, and lizards. The 
Turtles include the edible green turtle {Cheloiic viydas) and 
the hawk-bill turtle {Clielone imbricatd), whose imbricated 
dermal plates yield the tortoise-shell of commerce. Croco- 
diles {Crocodilus porosus and palustris), or muggurs, are 


frequently called alligators. The latter, however, are, with 
the exception of a Chinese species, found in the New, and 
not in the Old World. Of the Lizards, the largest is 
Varamts bengalcnsis, which is called the iguana or monitor, 
as it is supposed to give warning of the vicinity of 
crocodiles. It is also known as the bis-cobra (bish, poison), 
because it is believed, owing in all probability to its 
possessing a forked tongue, to be mortally venomous. The 
lizard {Calotes versicolor) with a spiny crest on its back, 
which is a common object of compounds in the plains, is 
generally called the blood-sucker, as the male, during the 
breeding season, assumes brilliant colours, including red, 
especially about the neck. It is also frequently called the 
chamEeleon. The chamjeleon is, however, quite different, 
and characterised by the mobility and independent action 
of its two eyes, a projectile tongue for catching insects, 
changeable hue of skin, and deliberate movements. 

Of Batrachians, the most familiar are the big bull-frog 
{Raiia tigrina) ; the green tank-frog {Rana Jiexadactyld) ; 
the burrowing Cacopns systoina, which makes the batrachian 
chorus during the rains ; the common toad {Bufo nielano- 
stictus) often seen in houses ; and the chunam frog {Rhaco- 
phonis viaculatiis), which sticks on plastered walls by 
means of the discs on its fingers and toes. The tinkling 
frog of the Nilgiris {Ixaliis variabilis) has the reputation of 
being a ventriloquist. The limbless batrachians are repre- 
sented by the burrowing Coecilians {Ichthjop/iis, Ur(Zo- 
typhlus, and Gegenophis), often mistaken for earth-snakes, 
which live buried underground on the west coast. 

The Fishes are represented by the Elasmobranchs 
(sharks and rays), and Teleostei (bony fishes). The largest 
shark recorded from South India is a specimen oi RJiinodon 
typicus, the largest known fish, captured off Madras in 
1880, which measures 22 feet in length. In this shark, 
each jaw is armed with a band of minute teeth, numbering 



several thousands. Among the rays may be noted the big 
saw-fish {P)'istis cuspidatns), whose snout or saw is armed 
with a double row of sharp teeth ; and the sting-ray 
( Trygon uarnak), whose tail is armed with a spine capable 
of inflicting very serious wounds. Among bony fishes, the 
most conspicuous is the large sea-perch {Epinephelus lanceo- 
latiis), which has been caught on several occasions by 
fishermen off Madras ; and the sword or peacock-fish 
{Histiophorns gladius), which attacks whales, ships, canoes, 
and drift wood, and sometimes leaves its sword (snout) 
imbedded therein. Among curiously shaped bony fishes 

Fig. ^2. Rhinodon typicus. 

may be noted the sea-horse {Hippocampus, sp.); the 
remora {Eckeneis nancrates), which has a sucking-disc on 
its head, by means of which it attaches itself to whales, 
turtles, sharks, and boats; the globe-fishes {Tetrodon and 
Diodon), which have great power of inflation ; and the file 
cr trigger-fishes {Batistes), which are accused of destroying 
the pearl-oysters by chiselling a hole through the shell 
with their sharp teeth, and extracting the soft parts of the 

The mahseer {Barbus tor), which sometimes weighs over 
90 lbs., affords excellent sport in the Bhavani, and other 


rivers. The rainbow trout of New Zealand has been 
recently introduced with success on the Nllgiri hills, and 
first provided sport for anglers in 191 1. The gourami 
{Osp/iromenus o/fax), whose natural home is China and the 
Malay Archipelago, has been naturalised in the big pond 
at Government House, Madras. 

According to one system of classification of zoo-geo- 
graphical areas, more especially with regard to insect life, 
the following are recognised, in addition to the hill areas, 
in the south of the Peninsula: 

1. Deccan. Well marked seasons, the dry hot weather 
following a marked cold weather, when hibernation sets in. 

2. West coast. The fauna influenced by the neigh- 
bouring sub-tropical region of permanent forests and high 
humidity, which produce a very large fauna. No hiberna- 
tion in the places below the ghats. Many Ceylonese 

3. Coromandel coast. Less well marked seasons than 
the Deccan. A large proportion of Ceylonese forms. 

The most primitive existing forms of Insects are 
represented by the Apteva or wingless insects. Included 
among these is the fish insect {Lcpisma), which takes up its 
abode in almirahs or wardrobes, and book-cases, to the 
contents of which it does much damage. 

Conspicuous among the Orthoptera are the leaf and 
stick insects, which bear a remarkable resemblance to 
leaves, sticks, and twigs, and afford examples of protective 
mimicry. The praying mantis owes its name to its habit 
of standing on its four hind-legs, with the front legs held 
up close together. The common Gongybis goiigyloides is 
called the orchid mantis, because it simulates an orchid 
flower. Cockroaches {Periplaneta) are common pests in 
houses and steamers. Migratory locusts {Acridiiiin), which 
sometimes travel in swarms so dense as to obscure the sun, 
do enormous damage to crops and vegetation. A column 
T. 7 



of locusts, which invaded the Maratha country, was described 

as extending- five hundred miles. 

Fig. 33. Leaf insect. 

Prominent among the Neuroptera are the "white-ants" 
{Termes), which are destructive to books, furniture, and 
wood-work. They live in large colonies, and build nests 



consisting of cells connected by galleries, which form the 
well-known ant-hills. The members of a colony consist of 
wingless soldiers and workers, sexual winged forms, and 
the Queen, who lives in a special cell, which she never 
leaves. At certain seasons, hosts of sexual winged white- 
ants come out from the ground, and fly about. Many of 
them are eaten by birds, ants, and other enemies. Those 
which escape shed their wings, which fall on the ground or 


Fig. 34. Female white-ant, distended with eggs. 

inside houses, and pair. In some places natives collect the 
bodies, which they sun-dry, and store in large pots as an 
article of food. 

The Lepidoptera are divided into the Butterflies and 
Moths. Some butterflies, e.g. various species of the yellow 
Terias, illustrate season dimorphism, or variation of the 
colouration and markings in the wet and dry season broods. 


loo FAUNA 

The upper surfaces of the wings of Hebomoia giaucippe and 
Kallivia Jwrsfieldi are brightly coloured ; but, when the 
animals are at rest, with the wings folded and exposing the 
dark under surface, they are protected by their resemblance 
to drie,:! leaves. In most cases of deceptive mimicry, the 
mimicked form has an odour which is repulsive to birds 
and lizards. Thus, the female of Hypolimnas misippiis, 
which is unlike the male (sexual dimorphism), mimics 
Daiiais chrysippus, and the female of Elymnias caudata 
mimics Danais genutia. The swallow-tail butterfly Papilio 
pamvion has two forms of female, which mimic respectively 
the males of Papilio aristolochice and Papilio hector. Many 
of the Nymphalidffi have what is called bird-misleading 
colouration, the conspicuous colour-markings on the wings 
diverting the bird's aim from the head and body, and 
enabling the butterfly to escape with a piece bitten out of 
its wings. The shawl butterfly, Cethosia maJiratta, is said 
to have suggested the pattern on the famous silk shawls. 
The cocoons of the wild silk-moth Anthcr(za papJiia, which 
are the source of tasar silk, are collected in certain forest 
areas, e.g. by the hill Panos in the Ganjam Maliahs. The 
rearing of the domesticated Boinbyx inori, or mulberry silk- 
worm, has for some time been a recognised industry in the 
Mysore State. In recent years, silk-worm or sericulture 
farms have been started under Japanese management, and 
by the Salvation Army at Bangalore. 

The Hymenoptera include the Wasps and Bees. Some 
wasps, known as potters, make mud cells on walls, window- 
panes, and other parts of houses, in which they deposit 
paralysed caterpillars. The largest of the hone}'-bees is 
Apis dorsata, which builds large nests in the forests. In 
quest of honey some jungle folk, eg. the Kadirs of the 
Anaimalai hills, climb lofty trees by means of bamboo 
stems or pegs, or, torch in hand, descend steep precipices 
on dark nights by means of a stout creeper or ladder made 



of bamboo or rattan, and, having smoked out the bees, 
take awa}' the honey. 

To the Diptera belong the Flies and Fleas. The 
anopheline mosquitoes have earned a bad reputation, as 
the females have the proboscis modified for the [purpose of 
sucking blood, and conve}' the germs of malarial fever to 
human beings. One of the mosquitoes {di/ex fatigans) 
conveys the parasite which causes elephantiasis (filariasis). 

Fig- 35- Jungle Irulas collecting honey. 

Among the Coleoptera or Beetles are many weevils, 
which are destructive to crops or trees. For example, the 
palm weevil {Rhynchophonis) breeds in the coconut and 
date palms, and may reduce the tree to a shell. The 
mango weevil iyCryptorhyiicJius) breeds in the stone of the 
mango, the eggs being laid in the young fruit, through the 
pulp of which the mature larva (grub or caterpillar) eats its 
wa}'. The nocturnal larvae of ATalacodermid Coleoptera 


emit a bright greenish-white h'ght from luminous organs 
situated on the abdomen. The dung-rollers roll the dung 
of animals into pellets or balls, which the}' push along with 
their hind-legs, and consume in some sheltered spot. The 
metallic green \vings of a Buprestid beetle are used in 
Madras for the ornamentation of articles of dress. 

Included among the Rhynchota is the common house- 
bug {Cimex), which lays its eggs in cracks in the floor, 
cane-bottomed chairs, and other safe places. The large 
bug {Belostoina) commonly called the water-scorpion, which 
has raptorial fore-legs, invades houses at certain seasons. 
The green bug {Lecanitun viride) is the green-scale of the 
coffee plant, \vhich proved disastrous to the coffee- planters. 
The Cicadas or knife-grinders are responsible for the shrill 
sound often heard in forests, which is produced by a 
complicated structure on the abdomen. The sound has 
been likened to that of the wooden rattle used during the 
boat-races at Cambridge. 



Owing to various causes, to its belonging to the oldest 
geological region in India, to its great stretch of latitude 
(from 8° — 20° N.), to its many hill ranges culminating in 
peaks over 8,000 feet above the sea, and to its varied rain- 
fall from about 200 inches on the western ghats to under 
20 inches in some of the driest parts of the Deccan, the 
Flora of the Madras Presidency is one of very varied 
character and great number of species. In all probability 
the number of flowering plants and ferns reaches about 
4,000. Naturally, the greatest number of these are found 










in the regions of heavy rainfall adjoining the west or 
Malabar coast, but other regions, such as the hills of the 
eastern side of the Presidency, give a considerable number. 
The stranger who lands at the port of Madras is often 
disappointed in the vegetation. In and about the town 
he sees, it is true, many forms of more or less tropical 
appearance like the coconut {Cocos niicifei^a) and palmyra 
{Borassiis flabellifei') palms, the banyan and pipal figs {Fiats 
bengalcnsis and religiosd), the plantain {Alusa sapientuju) 
and papaya or papaw {Carica Papaya) fruit trees, the 
mango, tamarind, and jack fruit, and feathery bamboos. 
But the country around seems to be a somewhat unin- 
teresting stretch of wet rice land with occasional rocky 
hills emerging from them here and there, and clothed with 
a shrubby and mostly thorny vegetation. And, travelling 
as he might about the cultivated low level areas of the 
Carnatic plain, he finds but little difference, little to tell 
him that the luxuriant tropical vegetation he may have 
expected to see exists at all in Southern India. Indeed, 
it is only when he has proceeded across the Peninsula, and 
finds himself at last on the Malabar coast in the narrow 
stretch of cultivated and forest land of steamy climate 
between the sea and the ghat range, and in the valleys 
of that range, that he is rewarded by something like the 
vegetation he has looked for. On the coast itself, culti- 
vated forests of the coconut palm, interspersed with 
occasional patches of mangrove swamp, are backed by 
green stretches of rice land and villages surrounded by 
trees. Here and there may be seen patches of the culti- 
vated areca nut palm {Areca Catechu), and groves of 
bamboos, which are so valuable for the construction of 
houses and innumerable other domestic purposes. The 
forests begin chiefly on low hills, and contain principally 
a mixture of many species, often of an evergreen character. 
They clothe the slopes of the ghat range, and among their 



chief trees are the teak {Tectona grandis), blackwood or 
rosewood {Dalbergia latifolia), and many Diptcrocarpeoiis 





i'^J i y^-<*'*''»ISS 



Pis'- 37- Tree Ferns. 

giants. On the summit of the ghat range there is a great 
change of character in the vegetation and scenery. Large 


stretches of grass land dotted with flowers, among which 
Senecio, AnapJialis, and Strohilanthcs, are conspicuous, alter- 
nate with patches of slow-growing shola (glade) forest 
chiefly of evergreen type, and the hill cultivated lands, in 
which the chief crops are kinds of millet, with maize, 
tapioca, and leguminous vegetables. The highest peaks 
are not usually precipitous, as is the western scarp of the 
ghat range, but are covered with grass and shola. 

After the summit of the ghat range comes a wonderful 
transition of climate, and consequently also of vegetation. 
By degrees, and rather speedy degrees, as the descent east- 
ward is made, the rainfall gets less, the climate and soil 
get dry, and both the cultivated crops and the general 
flora change. Cotton cultivation is common, millets again 
abound, sunn hemp and flax occur, trees are few and far 
between, and the hedgerow vegetation presents such strange 
plants as the various species of Cactus, the Agave, and the 
curious tree EiipJiorbias. The palmyra palm may occasion- 
ally be seen, but more common is the wild date palm 
{Phoenix sylvcstris), cut and twisted into uncouth shapes 
by the villagers for the sake of its sap, which gives a 
fermented liquor. The forest in such regions is confined 
chiefly to hilly places, and contains the same kinds of small 
deciduous trees as may be found throughout the whole of 
the centre of India. And so we come once more across 
the Peninsula, and find ourselves again in the Carnatic rice 
fields, which border the Coromandel coast. This coast 
extends northwards up to about latitude 20°, where it runs 
into Bengal, and everywhere presents the aspect of a dry 
sandy shore, in places much disturbed by sand-dunes, 
which have had to be tawed, and converted into protective 
forests artificially. The chief agent in this protective work 
has been the Casuarina tree, but there are others which are 
noticeable, and among them the cashew nut {Anacardium 
occidentale), the screw pine {Pandaiius odoratissimus), and 



a dwarf date (yPhcenix farinifera). Northward along the 
coast, pahnyra palms are common, with occasional coco- 
nuts and dates, and the forests produce such interesting 

Fig-. 38. Forest scenery. 

plants as StrycJinos Niix-vomica, the soapnut {Sapindus 
e7naj'^i7tatus), satinw'ood {CJiloroxylon Swzeteuia), and ebon}' 
{Diospyros Ebonwi). Inland from the coast rise the hills of 
the eastern ghat range, reaching to 4,coo-and occasionally 


5,000 feet, and covered for the most part with deciduous 
forest, in which, in the southern parts, the most noticeable 
trees are the teak and ironwood {Xylia dolabrifoj-mis)^ and 
in the northern the sal {SJiorea robusta). 

Behind the eastern ghat scarp comes the Deccan 
plateau, partly covered with forest, partly cultivated. In 
the cultivated fields cotton is a common crop, especially 
on those areas of decomposed rock known as black cotton 
lands. Among- the trees, red sanders {Ptcrocarpus saiita- 
limis) and sandal {Saiitalnni album) are the most noticeable, 
and the small vegetation in the open country consists very 
largely of somewhat shrubby species o{ Acanthacece. 

Sir Joseph Hooker, in his account of the Botany of 
India in the Imperial Gazetteer, divides the Peninsula into 
five regions, each of which contains a portion of the Madras 
Presidency. These regions are : — 

(i) What may be called the Northern Circars region, 
the country north of the river Godavari. It is all more or 
less hilly country, for, though here and there are some flat 
areas near the coast, especially the northern part of the 
Godavari delta, the hills come more or less down to the 
sea, and in some places, e.g. near Vizagapatam, form 
quite bold headlands. The highest point is Mahendragiri 
(4,923 feet), the summit of which is scarcely more than 
20 miles in a straight line from the coast ; but there are 
also other high peaks, especially in the densely wooded 
ranges of Golgonda and Rampa. The flora of the higher 
ranges shows a decided affinit\' to that of the hills of 
Assam and Burma, and possesses many plants of the 
temperate regions, and one especially noticeable plant on 
Mahendragiri is a date palm {Phceiiix robusta}), while the 
bracken fern covers the grass lands as elsewhere in the 
world at suitable elevations. The main hill slopes are 
forest-clad, except for the patches of cultivation round 
the villages of the Kondhs and other primitive tribes. The 


forests in the northern hills, in Ganjam and as far south 
as the Palkonda hills of Vizagapatam, are noticeable for 
fine trees of sal {Shorea robusta). Further south the chief 
noticeable tree is the ironwood {Xjlia dolabriformis), and 
near the Godavari the teak appears. The feathery kittul 
or bastard sago palm {Caryota iirens) is often conspicuous, 
as also is Cycas. There are many AcantJiaceous shrubs, 
and much bamboo, the common species being Bainbusa 
Tulda and arundinacca, and Dendrocalamus strictus. Near 
the coast the hills are often composed of laterite, and here 
the bush vegetation is usually of a thorny character, and 
there is often much Cactus, while the screw pine and 
cashew nut abound near the sea-shore. 

(2) The Upper Deccan region consists of the country 
between the rivers Godavari and Kistna, and only a small 
part of it comes into the Madras Presidency, the rest being 
in the Hyderabad State. In the little Madras piece there 
is a strip of hilly country with forests of bamboo, teak and 
other trees, rising in the " Bison hills " to a considerable 
height, and the rest is the valuable and very fertile delta 
region of the two rivers. On the coast are some man- 
grove forests, the most common tree in which is probably 
Avicennia; but, in the Bay of Masulipatam, the sandy 
shore contains a number of sand-loving species such as the 
convolvulus {Ipojiusa Pes-capr(Z) and the curious Spviifex 

(3) The Mysore region comprises the area between 
the Kistna river on the north and the Cauvery on the 
south, and includes the Mysore State, the Ceded Districts, 
the eastern ghat scarp more or less parallel to the sea and 
chiefly covered with valuable forest, and the great culti- 
vated plain of the northern Carnatic. In the interior, on 
the Bellary, Anantapur, and Kurnool plateau, the rainfall 
is very small, and the soil is sometimes black cotton, but 
more often red soil, covered largely with stones, and with 


isolated and usually metamorphic hills rising from it here 
and there, and often crowned by the interesting Poligar 
forts, which testify to the disturbed times of previous 
centuries. The forest vegetation is poor, but one valuable 
tree is often noticeable, the Hardwickia binata sometimes 
covering considerable areas of rocky country. The hedges 
and roadsides have many thorny bushes, and the flora in 
small plants such as grasses, Acanthacecc, Convoh'ulacecs, 
BoraginacecE, and Co7npositiC, is very interesting. On the 
ghat range in Cuddapah, North Arcot, and Salem, the 
country is forest-clad, except for many villages with areas 
of dry cultivation. Teak is fairly common, red sanders 
{Pterocarpiis santalimis) is the prevailing tree between 
N. Lat. 13° and 15°, and a kind of sal {Shorea Tiimbug- 
gaid) is very noticeable. In ravines, there is much bamboo 
of the two ordinary kinds, but there are few or no palms. 
In the coast belt, as already noted, the coconut and 
palmyra palms are characteristic, the latter especially 
among the villages. The hills are but lightly clothed with 
thorny scrub, and the laterite lands bear forests of an 
evergreen type, noticeable plants being the blue-flowered 
Memecylon, two species of Mimusops, and many RiibiacecB. 
On the coast, the sandy dunes have been largely reclaimed 
with Casuarina, and the river deltas show patches of man- 

(4) What may be called the South Carnatic region, 
from the Cauvery river to Cape Comorin, is bounded on 
the west by the bases of the Nllgiri, Anaimalai, Palni, and 
Tinnevelly hills, in the Coimbatore, Madura, and Tinne- 
velly districts. The character of the flora of this region is 
very similar to the last. The hill ranges are covered with 
deciduous forest, in which the principal tree is teak, and in 
places to the north, where the soil is poor, the half parasitic 
sandalwood {Santalmn album). The coast lands have their 
sandy dunes, sometimes, as near Point Calimere, covering 


considerable distances, which are being reclain:ied to forest. 
The cultivated lands have many groves of palmyra palm 
and coconut, with mango and jack fruit ; while, in the 
Tinnevelly plains to the extreme south, a very charac- 
teristic plant is the umbrella-shaped Acacia plainfro?is. 
The flora of small plants, Compositce, Acanthacecs, etc., is 
very varied and interesting, and especially so are the many 
and curious kinds of grasses. 

(5) The Malabar region comprises the lands along the 
western sea-coast and the ghat range, including the hills of 
Canara, Coorg, Wynaad, Nllgiris, Anaimalais, and Palnis. 
The southern part of this region is chiefly in the Travancore 
State. Being a region of great rainfall, as has been already 
explained, the vegetation is characteristically tropical ex- 
cept on the higher hills, and the flora is a rich one. There 
are many palms besides the coconut, areca, and occasional 
palmyras, the most conspicuous being the tall Coryphas 
which only flower once, produce enormous quantities of 
seed, and then die, Caryota, Arenga, the endemic Beu- 
tinckia Coddapanna, and the climbing rattan canes, species 
of the genus Calamus. Noticeable among bamboos are 
the thickets of the curious large-fruited OcJilandra travan- 
corica in the south, besides species of OxytenantJiera and 
Teinostachynm. Besides teak, of which the Government 
plantation in the Benne forest extends over 244 acres, the 
chief timber tree is the blackwood {Dalbergia latifolia), 
and there are many species of Giittiferce, Dipterocarpacece, 
Myristicaccce, Anonace(£, and other Families with con- 
spicuous large trees, the tree which probably reaches the 
largest size of all being the soft-wooded Tetrameles nudi- 
flora. The lower slopes and plateaux of the hills abound 
in interesting plants of many families, Leguminosce being 
perhaps the most noticeable, while there are many Orchideie, 
both ground-species and epiphytes. The Todas of the 
Nilgiris may often be seen rooting up grc and orchids with 

I 12 


a sharp-pointed digging-stick. The tubers are boiled in 
milk and taken " to make them strong." The shrubby 

Fig. 39. Bamboos on the Nllgiri Ghat Road. 

vegetation largely consists of species of StrobilaiitJies, most 
of which, like some palms and most bamboos, flower only 


once, and then die. On the higher hills, to which reference 
has already been made, the grass lands have a charac- 
teristic vegetation, and the shola forests fill the hollows 
with interesting trees, of which the most common are 
myrtles {Eugenia), hollies {I/ex), Rhododendron, MicJielia, 
and Meliosnia. Conspicuous plants also are the intro- 
duced gorse and arum lily. A beautiful white lily {Lilium 
neilgherrense) is not uncommon, and in the peat bogs 
occurs the curious Hedyotis verticillata. In these hills 
many Australian plants have been introduced, chiefly 
species of Eiicalyptns and Acacia. Finally, it may be re- 
marked that perhaps the most interesting point is the 
almost complete absence of indigenous Conifers and 

The forests of the Madras Presidenc}- are found in all 
districts, for nearly all the land in the Presidency, except 
in the Native States and in a small number of granted 
estates, is the property of the Government, who own the 
forests. The area thus placed under management amounts 
to about 20,000 square miles, and requires a considerable 
staff of officers. The forests serve chiefly for the supply 
of the requirements of the great agricultural population in 
fuel and building material, the more valuable ones also 
yielding a considerable amount of better class timber for 
public works such as the railways, but scarcely any for 
export. The most valuable forests are those of teak, 
which are found principally in Malabar, the Nllgiris, and 
Coimbatore; but there are other teak forests in the Deccan 
country, and up to and across the river Godavari. Sal 
forests occur chiefly in the most northernly district, Gan- 
jam ; red sanders wood in Cuddapah and North Arcot ; 
sandal in Coimbatore and Coorg ; and Hat'dwickia in 
Anantapur and Bellary. In most other regions the forests 
are of mixed species, the chief timber-givers being trees 
of the genera Dalbergia, Xylia, Pterocarpns, Tenninalia, 
T. 8 


Lagerstromia, Advia, Vitex, Acacia, Albizsia, and Arto- 
cai-pus. In the hilly regions, introduced Australian trees 
of quick growth are very conspicuous, and some Coniferous 
woods have been recently brought in. Nearly all the 
forests are managed under simple plans of working, de- 
signed to produce as much material as possible without 
endangering the capital stock, though this is by no means 
an easy matter in a country where every village possesses 
huge herds of often very poor cattle requiring forest grazing 
for their support. 



Of the palms which are useful for economic purposes, 
the most important are the coconut (yCocos rmcifera), 
palmyra or tar {Borassus Jlabellifer), betel-nut palm {Areca 
Catechu), wild date or date-sugar palm {Phcenix sylvestris), 
the Indian sago palm or salop {Caryota iirens), which yields 
the kittul fibre used in brush-making, and the several species 
of Calaimis, of which the rope-like stems yield the canes 
and rattans of commerce. According to a Tamil proverb, 
80 1 uses are ascribed to the palmyra palm. 

The coconut palm grows luxuriantly along the littoral 
of both the west and east coasts, and is also cultivated far 
inland, e.g. in Coimbatore and Mysore. It is further an 
important source of livelihood to the Laccadive islanders, 
who bring their produce to Malabar. A very important 
industry in Malabar is the extraction of the fibre known as 
coir (kayar) from the outer walls of the fruits or husks of 
the coconut. These are retted (or rotted) by burying 
them in pits on the margin of rivers, streams, or back- 
waters, in which they are left to soak for six months, a 








year, or even longer. When the husks are removed from 
the pits, the fibre is beaten out with sticks by women of 
the Tiyan and other castes, dried in the sun, and twisted 
into yarn for export to Europe, where it is manufactured 
into matting, rope, etc. The fibre was introduced into 
England about 1836, and it is on record that, at the bap- 
tism of the late King Edward VII in 1842, the floor of 
St George's Hall at Windsor Castle was covered first with 



Fig-. 41. Coir-picking-, Malabar. 

matting made of the husk of the coconut. The white 
kernel of the coconut fruit, v.^hen sliced and dried, is called 
kopra, and is the source of coconut oil, which is largely 
used as an illuminant, in cooking, and in soap manufacture. 
For the illuminations on the occasion of the marriage of 
Queen Victoria, Price's Candle Company introduced a 
cheap candle composed of stearic acid and coconut stea- 
rine, which did not require snuffing. The oil-cake, which 


remains after the oil has been expressed from the kernel, 
is used as food for cattle. The " milk " of young or green 
coconuts affords a refreshing drink. The wood, com- 
mercially known as porcupine wood, is used for a variety 
of purposes, e.g. for rafters of buildings, the manufacture 
of walking-sticks, etc. 

The extraction of the juice of the coconut, palmyra, 
and wild date palms, gives employment to the various 
toddy-drawing castes, of which the most important are the 
Tamil Shanars, Telugu Idigas, Malayalam Tiyans, Canarese 
Halepaiks, and Tulu Billavas. The Shanars, when em- 
ployed in the palmyra forests of Tinnevelly, are said to 
climb from forty to fifty trees, each forty or fifty feet high, 
three times a day. The story is told by Bishop Caldwell 
of a Shanar who was sitting upon a leaf-stalk at the top of 
a palmyra palm in a high wind, when the stalk gave way, 
and he came to the ground safely and quietly, sitting on 
the leaf, which served the purpose of a parachute. Wood- 
peckers are called Shanar kurivi by bird-catchers, because 
they climb trees like Shanars. There is a legend that the 
Shanars are descended from Adi, the daughter of a Pariah 
woman, who taught them to climb the palm tree, and pre- 
pared a medicine which would protect them from falling 
from the high trees. The squirrels also ate some of it, and 
enjoy a similar immunity. In Malabar, the toddy-drawer's 
outfit consists of a knife, a bone (the leg bone of a sambhar 
deer from choice) loaded with lead for bruising the flower- 
stalk, a few earthen pots, and two rings of rope with which 
to climb the tree. The Telugu toddy-drawers use a ladder 
about eight or nine feet in length, which is placed against 
the tree. The Shanars climb up and down with their 
hands and arms, using a soft grummel of coir to keep the 
feet near together. The juice or sap, which exudes when the 
flower-stalks are cut, is collected in the pots. If the juice 
is to be drunk fresh, in which state it is known as sweet 

Fig. 42. Toddy-drawer climbing' palm-tree. 


toddy (a corruption of tari), the pots are coated inside with 
lime, to prevent fermentation from setting in, and yielding 
the intoxicating beverage. If the toddy is subjected to 
distillation, a form of spirituous liquor or palm wine, called 
arrack, is obtained. Arak means perspiration, and hence 
exudation of sap. A corruption of the word is rack, which 
occurs in rack punch. The excise or abkari revenue is 
largely derived from the sale of arrack carried on in 
licensed shops, the right of sale in which is put up to 
auction annually. A further source of revenue is the tax 
levied on each tree which is tapped for toddy. In the hill- 
tracts of Ganjam and Vizagapatam, spirit is distilled from 
the flowers of the mahua tree {Bassia). The hill tribes of 
these districts also obtain alcoholic liquor from the fer- 
mented juice of the salop palm. 

The juice of the various palms, when boiled down, 
yields a coarse, dark-coloured sugar called jaggery (a 
corruption of the Sanskrit sarkara, sugar), which is very 
largely used by the poorer classes. Small round cakes of 
jaggery are said to have formerly passed as a kind of 
currency in Tinnevelly, and do even now to a small extent. 

The seeds of the areca palm, which are in appearance 
like small nutmegs, are commonly called betel-nuts. The 
name betel, however, strictly applies to the leaves of the 
Piper Betle or pan, which is chewed by Indians with the 
areca seeds (supari). The presentation and distribution 
of pan-supari are an important feature of many ceremonial 



South India is essentially the home of the Dravidian 
languages, which are spoken by over 90 per cent, of the 
population. The word Dravidian has been simply defined 
as the name given to a collection of Indian people, and 
their form of language comprising all the principal forms 
of speech in Southern India. In the Linguistic Survey of 
Ijidia, Mr G. A. Grierson writes that the name Dravidian 
" is derived from an older Dramila, Damila, and is identical 
with the name of Tamil. The name Dravidian is, accord- 
ingly, identical with Tamulian, which name has formerly 
been used by European writers as a common designation 
of the languages in question. The word Dravida forms 
part of the denomination Andhra-Dravida-bhasha, the 
language of the Andhras {i.e. Telugu), and Dravidas {i.e. 
Tamilians), which Kumarila Bhatta (probably 7th century 
A.D.) employed to denote the Dravidian family." 

The five principal Dravidian languages, spoken in South 
India, are Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Canarese, and Tulu. 
The population speaking each of these languages, as re- 
corded at the Census, 1901, was as follows (see Table on 
p. 122). 

Tamil is the language of the southern districts of the 
Madras Presidency from a few miles north of Madras as 
far west as the Nllgiri hills and western ghats, and south- 
ward to Cape Comorin. Telugu is mainly spoken in the 
districts north of Madras, except the west of Bellary and 
Anantapur, the Agencies, and the northern part of Ganjam, 
where it gives place to the Indo-Aryan Oriya language, 

^S3 Kanarese , Kodagu, Toda.Kota 



iaiij?:-! Mals^aiam 

Fig. 43. Map showing distribution of the Dravidian languages. 



Classification of the Population according to the 
principal Languages. 



Malay alam 



Madras Presidency 






























which is spoken by various Oriya castes in Ganjam and 
Vizagapatam, who belong ethnically to Bengal rather than 
to Madras. It has been said that, of all Dravidian lan- 
guages, Telugu, which has been called the Italian of the 
East, is the most musical, and sounds harmonious even 
in the mouth of the most vulgar and illiterate. Canarese 
is essentially the language of the western portions of 
Bellary and Anantapur, and the Mysore State. The 
Kodagu or Coorg language is said to be a dialect of 
Hala Kannada, or old Canarese. Malayalam is practically 
confined to Travancore, Cochin, Malabar, and South Ca- 
nara. A dialect thereof is said to be spoken by the 
Yeravas of Coorg. Tulu is the prevalent language in 
South Canara (the ancient Tuluva). 

Of the tribes inhabiting the Nilgiri hills, the Badagas 
are said to speak an ancient form of Canarese, the Kotas 
a mixture of Canarese and Tamil, and the jungle Irulas and 
Kurumbas dialects of Tamil and Canarese. As regards 
the language of the Todas, Bernhard Schmid, who wrote 


in 1837, ascribed two-thirds of the vocabulary to Tamil. 
Bishop Caldwell was also of opinion that it is most closely 
allied to Tamil, whereas, according to Dr Pope, it was 
originally old Canarese, to which a few Tamil forms were 
added. It is noted by Dr Rivers, in his book entitled The 
Todas (1906), that they have undoubtedly borrowed many 
words from the Badagas. 

A Dravidian language, called Gondi, and a dialect 
thereof named Gattu, are spoken by the Gonds, who have 
migrated from the Central Provinces to Ganjam and Viza- 
gapatam ; and a dialect thereof occurs among the hill 
Koyis. The Kondhs of the Ganjam and Vizagapatam 
hills also speak a Dravidian language, called Kui. 

The hill Savaras and Gadabas of Ganjam and Vizaga- 
patam speak languages, which are placed by Mr Grierson 
in the Munda linguistic family, called Kolarian by Sir 
George Campbell, of which the principal home is the 
Chota Nagpur plateau. 

Of Indo-Aryan languages other than Oriya, Marathi is 
spoken by the descendants of the former Marathas of 
Tanjore, and by various castes in the Bellary district and 
Sandur State, which were formerly under Maratha dominion, 
in South Canara, Mysore, etc. In South Canara, and south- 
ward into the Cochin and Travancore States, a dialect of 
Marathi, called Konkani, is the language of Sarasvat and 
Konkani Brahmans, Roman Catholics, and others. The 
Konkanis are said to have migrated southward to escape 
from the religious persecution of the Portuguese, and found 
a safe haven in Travancore and Cochin, where they de- 
veloped their commerce, and built temples, which were 
richly endowed. A dialect of Gujarati, named Patniili or 
Khatri, is spoken by the Patnulkaran immigrants from 
Saurashtra in Gujarat, who settled as weavers in the town 
of Madura, at the invitation, it is said, of one of the Nayak 


Hindustani (including the Deccani or Dakhini dialect) 
is the language of the Muhammadan population. For the 
purpose of the education of the children of Labbai and 
Marakkayar Muhammadans, the Koran, and other books, 
have been published in the Tamil language, with Arabic 
characters. It is said that a book of a religious character, 
written or printed in Tamil, may be left on the ground, but 
a kitab (book) in Arabic, of even secular character, will 
always be placed on a seat, and, if it falls to the ground, is 
kissed and raised to the forehead. 

The nomad Lambadis, Brinjaris, or Sugalis, have a 
language, which has been said to be usually based on one 
of the local vernaculars, embroidered and diversified with 
thieves' slang and expressions borrowed from the various 
localities, in which the tribe has sojourned. Like the 
Lambadis, the wandering Koravas or Yerukalas, who call 
their language Oodra (possibly a corruption of Oriya), 
have a thieves' slang, and call a head-constable the man 
who rides on an ass, a constable a red-headed man, rupees 
milk eyes, and so on. 



According to man}- writers on Lidian ethnology, the 
oldest existing race in the Indian peninsula is represented 
by the Dravidians, who make up the bulk of the population 
in South India. Tradition has it that the warlike Asuras and 
Daithias (Danavas), who opposed the proto-Aryan in\aders 
of the Punjab, sent expeditions to the Deccan, where they 
found the semi-civilised States of South India, and imposed 
their speech and culture on the aborigines. It is the Pre- 
Dravidian aborigines, and not the later and more cultured 


Dravidians, who must be regarded as the primitive exist- 
ing race. According to modern nomenclature, these Pre- 
Dravidians belong to the group of melanous, dolichocephalic 
cymotrichi, or dark-skinned, narrow-headed people, with 
wavy or curly (not woolly) hair, who are differentiated 
from the Dravidian classes by their short stature and 
broad (platyrhine) noses. There is strong ground for 
the belief that the Pre-Dravidians are ethnically related 
to the Veddas of Ceylon, the Toalas of the Celebes, the 
Batin of Sumatra, and possibly the Australians. The 
theory of the connexion between the Pre-Dravidians and 
Australians is based partly on the strength of certain 
characters which the Dravidian and Australian languages 
are said to have in common, and partly on the supposed 
resemblance of the curved throwing-sticks (valai tadi) of 
the Tamil Kalians and Maravans to the Australian boom- 
erang. The throwing-stick is used for knocking over hares 
and other small game, and, at some Kalian weddings, the 
bride and bridegroom exchange sticks. 

Of the Pre-Dravidian tribes, the most typical examples 
are afforded by the Paniyans of Malabar, who carry out 
most of the rice cultivation ; the Kurumbas of the Nllgiri 
and Mysore jungles ; the Yeravas of Coorg ; the Paliyans 
of Tinnevelly ; and the Kadirs of the Anaimalai hills. The 
Kurumbas are dreaded by the other tribes of the Nllgiris, 
owing to their supposed magical powers; and, if sickness 
or misfortune of any kind visits them, some Kurumba is 
held responsible. Some years ago, a whole family of 
Kurumbas was murdered, because the head thereof, who 
had a reputation as a " medicine-man," was believed to 
have brought disease and death into a Badaga village. 
The Kadir women wear in their hair bamboo combs, the 
designs on which bear a remarkable resemblance to those 
on the combs worn by some tribes in the Malay peninsula. 
Like the Mala Vedars of Travancore, and some Malay 



tribes, the Kadirs have the incisor teeth chipped to a 
point. The description of tree-cHmbing with the assist- 
ance of pegs by the Dayaks of Borneo, as given by Wallace 
in his Malay ArcJiipelago, might have been written on the 

Fig. 44. Jungle Paliyan. 

Anaimalai hills. A Kadir will build a house or raft out of 
bamboo, bridge a stream with canes and branches, make 
a fishing-line out of fibre, set effective traps for catching 
beasts and birds, and find food among the forest trees and 
roots. Some jungle tribes, e.g. the Kadirs, Kurumbas, and 


Yanadis, work for the Forest Department, and collect 
minor forest produce, such as deer horns, elephant tusks, 
rattans, cardamoms, myrabolams, soap-nuts, nux-vomica 

In their religion, the primitive tribes are animists, 
" seeking to influence the shifting and shadowy company 
of unknown powers or influences for evil rather than for 
good, which reside in the primeval forest, in the hills, in 
the rushing river, in the spreading tree; which give its 
spring to the tiger, its venom to the snake, which generate 
jungle fever, and walk abroad in the terrible guise of 
cholera, smallpox, or murrain." Some jungle folk, how- 
ever, now worship Hindu deities, visit the plains at times 
of Hindu festivals, make offerings at Hindu shrines, daub 
their forehead and bodies with sandal paste, and give their 
children Hindu names. 

As in other countries, civilisation is fast bringing about 
a radical change in so-called manners and customs. The 
Paniyans of the Wynaad, and Irulas of the Nllgiris, now 
work regularly for wages on European planters' estates. 
The primitive method of making fire by friction with two 
pieces of wood or bamboo is fast disappearing before the 
use of lucifer-matches. The practice of human or meriah 
sacrifice by the hill Kondhs, to propitiate the earth goddess, 
has been abolished within the memory of men still living, 
and the sacrifice of a bufl"alo or sheep substituted for it. 
The Kondhs of Bara Moota promised to relinquish the 
meriah rite on condition that they should be at liberty to 
sacrifice buffaloes, monkeys, goats, etc., to their deities, 
and that they should be at liberty to denounce to their 
gods the Government as being the cause of their having 
abandoned the great rite. Twenty-five descendants of 
persons who were reserved for sacrifice, but were rescued 
by Government officers, returned themselves as Meriah at 
the census, 1901. The practice of female infanticide was 



formerly very prevalent among the Kondhs, and, in the 
middle of the last centur\', many villages were found with- 
out a single female child in them. The custom of killing 
the female infants also prevailed among the Todas of the 
Nllgiris, among whom there is, even at the present day, 
a very marked preponderance of males over females. The 

Fig. 45. Yanadis making fire by friction. 

institution of polyandry, in accordance with which, when 
a girl marries a man, she becomes also the wife of his 
brothers, is still in force among the Todas. It is, however, 
noted by Dr Rivers that " there is a tendency for the poly- 
andr}' of the Todas to become combined with polygyny. 
Two brothers, who in former times would have had one 


wife between them, may now take two wives, but, as a 
general rule, the two men have the two wives in common. 
In addition, polygyny of the more ordinary kind exists, 
and is probably now increasing in frequency, as one of the 
results of the diminished female infanticide." The pic- 
turesque, but barbarous custom of hook-swinging is now 
regarded with disfavour by the Government; and, in the 
Mysore State, instead of a human being with strong iron 
hooks driven through the small of the back, a little wooden 
figure, named Sidi Viranna, dressed up in gaudy attire, 
and carrying a shield and sabre, is hoisted on high, and 
swung round. 

Abundant evidence exists in support of the belief that 
some of the primitive tribes, as well as the slave {adscripti 
glebes) and other depressed classes, once held a high posi- 
tion, and were indeed masters of the land. In a note on 
the privileges of the servile classes, Mr M. J. Walhouse 
writes that " many curious vestiges of their ancient power 
still survive in the shape of certain privileges, which are 
jealously cherished, and, their origin being forgotten, are 
much misunderstood. These privileges are a remarkable 
instance of survivals from an extinct state of society." At 
one of the agricultural ceremonies of the Badagas of the 
Nilgiris, a Kurumba heads the procession, scattering frag- 
ments of the sacred tijd tree {Meliosvia piingens), brings 
a few sheaves of millet {Setaria italica : tenai) to the 
temple, and ties them to a stone set up at the main en- 
trance. At the festival of Siva at Tiruvalur in the Tanjore 
district, the headman of the Paraiyans (Pariahs) is mounted 
on the elephant with the god, and carries the chauri (fly- 
flapper). In Madras, at the annual festival of the goddess 
of the Black Town, when the tali (marriage badge) is tied 
round the neck of the idol, a Paraiyan is chosen to repre- 
sent the bridegroom. At the festival of some village god- 
desses, a Paraiyan is honoured by being invested with the 
T. 9 


sacred thread, and permitted to head the procession. At 
Melkote in Mysore, the Holeyas (agrestic serfs) have the 
right of entering the temple as far as the dhvaja-stambham 
or consecrated monolithic column on certain days. It is 
said that the temple is afterwards ceremonially purified. 
The privilege is reputed to have been conferred on the 
Holeyas, in return for their helping Ramanuja to recover 
the image of Krishna, which was carried off to Delhi by 
the Muhammadans. 

Conversion to the Muhammadan faith has had a marked 
effect in liberating the depressed classes in Malabar from 
their former burthen, and the same follows on their em- 
bracing Christianity. A melancholy picture has been 
drawn of a Cheruman in Malabar tramping along the 
marshes in mud, often wet up to the waist, to avoid 
polluting his superiors. In the scale of pollution, the 
jungle Nayadis of Malabar occupy the lowest place, and 
are said to pollute a Brahman at a hundred yards. By 
conversion to Christianity or Islam, both Cherumans and 
Nayadis escape from many of the disabilities resulting 
from their degraded position in the social scale. 

I pass on to the consideration of the more highly 
civilised classes, which, at times of census, have come 
under the general head of Hindus, or those who worship 
any of the recognised gods of the Hindu Pantheon. Hindu- 
ism has been summed up as a term which is used, for the 
sake of convenience, to designate the religious creeds and 
practices, differing from one another in their principles, and 
in the social principles with which they are organically 
connected, of more than two hundred millions of Hindus. 
Included in the definition are the four traditional castes, 
viz. Brahman (priestly), Kshatriya (ruling or military), 
Vaisya (trading), and Sudra, which are said to have arisen 
respectively from the head, arms, thighs, and feet of Brahma. 
These four castes have been said to be distinguished by 


their colour, viz. Brahman, white ; Kshatriya, red ; Vaisya, 
yellow or turmeric colour ; Sudra, black. Sudra is a very 
indefinite term, and has been summed up as including a 
congeries of castes, in which we find all the varying grades 
of social respectability, from industrious artisans and culti- 
vators to vagrants and scavengers. The word caste (casta), 
meaning race or kind, was introduced by the Portuguese, 
and has been universally adopted. The terms high caste 
and low caste are familiar to all who have lived in India. 

The Brahmans occupy the highest position socially and 
intellectually, and are divided into a series of linguistic 
groups (Tamil, Telugu, etc.), which are split up into terri- 
torial, sectarian, or occupational divisions. From a religious 
point of view, the Brahmans are either Saivites or Vaishna- 
vites. Among the latter, two important divisions are the 
Vadagalais (northerners) and Tengalais (southerners). The 
Vaishnavites are followers of the Tamil Brahman Ramanuja, 
Madhva Acharya, or Chaitanya. The Oriya Brahmans, 
who follow the creed of Chaitanya, are called Paramarthos. 
Many of those who claim Sankara Acharya as their founder 
are Saivites. The birthplace of Sankara has been located 
at a village in Travancore, and a garden on the bank of 
the Periyar river is pointed out as the spot at which he 
consigned his mother's body to the earth. The priest of 
the temple at Gurhwal in North India, which is said to 
have been established by Sankara Acharya, must be a 
Nambutiri Brahman. The Nambutiris form the socio- 
spiritual aristocracy of the west coast, where many are 
large landowners. Every Brahman wears the sacred thread, 
with which he is invested during boyhood at the upanaya- 
nam ceremony. At the present day, many Hindus dis- 
regard certain ceremonies, in the performance of which 
their forefathers were most scrupulous. But no Brahman, 
orthodox or unorthodox, would dare to omit the celebra- 
tion of the annual sradh (oblation made in faith) in memory 



of his deceased father. Popular traditions allude to whole- 
sale conversions of non-Brahmans into Brahmans. Accord- 

r^*;. j^ftii^' 

V y "&- 

Fig. 46. A Madhva Brahman. 

ing to such traditions, Rajas used to feed very large numbers 
of Brahmans (a lakh of Brahmans), in expiation of some 


sin, or to gain religious merit. To make up this large 
number, non-Brahmans are said to have been made Brah- 
mans at the bidding of the Rajas. Here and there are 
found a few sections of Brahmans, whom the more ortho- 
dox Brahmans do not recognise as such, though the 
ordinary- members of the community regard them as an 
inferior class of Brahmans. As an instance, the IMarakas 
of the Mysore State may be cited. Though it is difficult 
to disprove the claim put forward b}- these people, many 
demur to their being regarded as Brahmans. 

The Lingayats. or Vira Saivas, who are most numerous 
in the Mysore State, have been described as a Puritan 
order, who revolted from the Brahman supremacy and 
caste rule under a certain Basava in the twelfth century. 
The outward and visible sign of their religion is a red silk 
scarf or metal casket containing the linga (phallic emblem), 
which they wear on some part of the body. 

The Jains, named after the twenty-four Jinas or Tlr- 
thankaras (conquerors or teachers of schools of thought), 
whose origin goes back to the sixth century B.C., are 
another sect of nonconformists to Brahmanism. They 
are chiefly found in ^Mysore, with headquarters at Sravana 
Belgola, in the North and South Arcot districts, and South 
Canara. The two main divisions are Digambara (sky-clad, 
i.e. nude) and Swetambara (white-robed). A series of paint- 
ings in the Minakshi temple at ]\Iadura illustrate the perse- 
cution and impaling of the Jains on stakes by the Saivites. 

It has been said that there are, in South India, possibly 
a few representatives (Rajputs) of the old Kshatriya caste, 
but the bulk of those who claim to belong thereto are pure 
Dravidians. The Rajas of Jejpore (named after the cele- 
brated town in North India) trace their pedigree back 
through more than thirty generations to one Kanakasena 
of the solar race of Kshatriyas. The Maharaja of Mysore 
belongs to the Arasu caste of " Kshatriyas." And there is 


said to be an old Sanskrit verse, which describes eight 
classes of Kshatriyas as occupying Kerala from very early 
times, namely Bhupala or Maharaja, such as those of 
Travancore and Cochin, etc. The indigenous " Ksha- 
triyas " of Kerala are now divided into four classes, viz. 
Koil Pandala, Raja, Tampan, and Tirumulpad. 

The Telugu Komatis, and some other trading classes, 
claim to belong to the Vaisya caste, and^the Komatis have 
established a Vysia Association for the advancement of the 

The non-Brahman Hindu community is split up into 
a very large number of castes, which include cultivators, 
artisans, fishermen, traders, shepherds, and a host of others. 
The two great Tamil and Telugu cultivating castes, Vellala 
and Kapu, alone account for about five millions of the 
population. In illustration of the manner in which castes 
increase and multiply, two examples must suffice. Among 
the divisions of the Kevuto fishing caste of Ganjam are 
three, called Thossa, Liyari, and Chuditiya. Of these, the 
Thossas are cultivators, the Liyaris make a preparation of 
fried rice (liya), and the Chuditiyas are engaged in parch- 
ing grain (chuda, parched rice). By reason of this change 
of occupation, the Liyaris and Chuditiyas have practically 
become distinct castes, and some deny that there is any 
connection between them and the Kevutos. The Jatapus 
are a civilised section of the hill Kondhs, who have given 
up eating beef, taken to infant marriage, adopted the 
Telugu type of marriage ceremonies, worship Hindu gods, 
and have practically developed into a new caste. It has 
been well said that " a man's caste affects his life from its 
beginning to its end. It frequently determines his occupa- 
tion, and it often fixes his residence for him, most villages 
being divided into caste quarters. The social position and 
the limits within which he may marry are decided by his 
caste, and so is his name, and even sometimes the clothes 


which he and his womenkind may wear." Many castes 
are divided into endogamous divisions, which form the 
hmit within which a man is obHged to marry, and ex- 
ogamous septs, which, on the other hand, form the hmit 
within which he may not marry, i.e. he must marry a girl 
of a sept other than that to which he belongs. In many 
cases, especially among the Telugu, Canarese, and Oriya 
castes, the exogamous septs are totemistic, and bear the 
name of some animal, tree, plant, or object, natural or 
inanimate, which a member of the sept is prohibited from 
killing, eating, cutting, burning, carrying, or using. In one 
of the Telugu castes, members of the frog sept will not 
injure frogs, and those of the thanda sept abstain from 
using the fruit or leaves of the thanda plant {CepJialandra 
indica), which is a very common Indian vegetable. In 
another caste, women of the magili {Pandanus fascicidaris) 
sept do not use the flower-buds for the purpose of adorning 
themselves, and a man has been known to refuse to pur- 
chase bamboo mats, because tliey were tied up with the 
fibre of this tree. In }'et another caste, if the totem is 
a plant, it is said that a person who breaks the taboo will 
be punished by being born as an insect for several genera- 
tions. A person who wishes to eat the forbidden fruit may 
do so by performing the funeral ceremonies of the totemic 
ancestor at Gaya in Bengal, where obsequial ceremonies 
for ancestors are celebrated. Many of the lower classes, 
though nominally worshippers of Vishnu or Siva, worship 
more especially the village deities or Grama Devatas, con- 
cerning which Bishop Whitehead writes as follows : " In 
almost every village of South India may be seen a shrine 
or symbol of the Grama Devata, and the Grama Devata is 
periodically worshipped and propitiated. Very often the 
shrine is nothing more than a small enclosure with a i&w 
rough stones in the centre, and often there is no shrine 
at all ; but still, when calamity overtakes the village, 
when pestilence or famine, or cattle disease, make their 


appearance, it is to the village deity that the whole body 
of villagers turn for protection. Siva and Vishnu may be 
more dignified beings, but the village deity is regarded as 
a more present help in trouble, and is more intimately con- 
cerned with the happiness and prosperity of the villagers." 
The Muhammadan community has been divided into : 
(a) those who are immigrants from other provinces and 
countries, and pure-blooded descendants of such immi- 
grants ; (5) those who are the offspring of immigrant men 
by Hindu women of the south ; (c) those who are full- 
blooded natives of the south, who have been converted to 
Islam. Included among the Muhammadans are the Labbais 
and Marakkayars of the east coast, and Mappillas (Moplahs) 
of the west coast, many of whom are prosperous traders and 
boat-owners ; the Diidekula cotton-cleaners of the Telugu 
country; and the Dayare Muhammadans of Mysore, who 
differ from orthodox Muhammadans on a point of belief 
concerning the advent of Imam Mahadi. The Dudekulas 
are said to have adopted or retained many of the customs 
of the Hindus, tying a tali on the bride's neck at weddings, 
dressing like Hindus, and giving their children names with 
Hindu terminations, e.£: Hussainappa or Roshamma. 

The White and Black Jews, as they are commonly 
called, are settled in Jew's Town at Mattancheri, adjoining 
the British quarter of Cochin. It has been said that, pass- 
ing through a native bazar crowded with dark-skinned 
Malayalis, one turns off abruptly into a long, narrow street, 
where faces as white as those of any northern European 
race, but Semitic in every feature, transport one suddenly 
in mind to the Jewish quarters at Jerusalem, or rather 
perhaps to some ghetto in a Polish city. The circum- 
stances under which, and the time when the Jews migrated 
to the west coast, are wrapped in obscurity. The Black 
Jews believe themselves to be descendants of the first 
captivity, who were brought to India, and did not return 
with the Israelites who built the second temple. It seems 



probable that the White Jews are late arrivals, who came 
to Cochin as traders, and built their synagogue and quarters 
after the Black Jews were established there. Each section 
has its own synagogue. The floor of the synagogue of the 
White Jews is paved with blue and white Canton china 

The Syrian Christians, who form an important com- 
munity in Travancore and Cochin, trace their origin back 
to a very remote period. On one occasion, the wife of a 
European official asked one of the pupils at a school how 
long they had been Christians. " We," came the crushing 
reply, " were Christians when you English were worship- 
ping Druids, and stained with woad." According to tra- 
dition, the apostle St Thomas landed near Cranganore on 
the west coast about 52 A.D., and founded seven churches 
in Cochin and Travancore. The Syrian Christians are 
divided into several groups, e.g. Romo-Syrians, Jacobite 
Syrians, and Reformed or St Thomas' Christians. In an 
address presented to Sir M. E. Grant-Duff, when Governor 
of Madras, it was stated that this was the first occasion 
which, after ages of separation, witnessed the spectacle of 
all the different sects of their community, following di- 
vergent articles of faith, sinking for once their differences, 
to do honour to their friend. 

Principal Religions, according to the Census, 1901. 







Madras Presidency 
































Of the widespread distribution of prehistoric man in 
Southern India in the palaeoHthic and neohthic ages, and 
in the era of rude stone monuments, ample proof is afforded 
by the dolmens, cromlechs, and kistvaens of the Deccan, 
Nllgiri and Palni hills, and many other localities ; the hat 
stones (topi kallu) and umbrella stones (kuta kallu) of 
Malabar, etc. 

Of the ages referred to, the palseolithic or old stone age 
is represented by implements manufactured by chipping 
and flaking stones of suitable hardness to an edge or point. 
In the later neolithic or new stone age, in which the art of 
making pottery came into existence, the implements were 
made by chipping, and subsequently rubbing down and 
polishing the stones. The neolithic age passed into the iron 
age, in which the art of smelting iron, and making pottery 
on the wheel, had been discovered, and stone implements 
were almost entirely displaced by iron ones. 

Extensive finds of palaeolithic implements have been 
made, among other places, in the country round Madras, 
e.g. at Pallavaram, Arkonam, and Fundi near Tiruvallur, 
and along the valley of the Penner river in the Cuddapah 
district. The implements found at Pundi, and other places 
in the neighbourhood, were situated in the laterite beds. 
These beds contain boulders of quartzite, from which the 
implements were made. 

Neolithic implements, believed to be the thunderbolts 
of Vishnu, are preserved in little shrines or cells cut in the 



rocks, and set up on end round the foot of sacred trees on 
the Shevaroy hills. In the country round Bellary, e.g. near 
the summit of Peacock hill, Mr R. Rruce Koote found 
many evidences of the former settlements of neolithic man, 
in the shape of terraces revetted with rough stone walls, 
near which were great accumulations of pottery, bones of 
bovine animals, tanks made by damming streams, and 
shallow troughs hollowed out in the rocks, which were 

Fig. 47. Palaeolithic and neolithic implements. 

apparently used for crushing corn. Mr P"oote further 
discovered stone celts in all stages of manufacture, chipped, 
ground, and polished, and flakes struck off them during the 
process of fabrication. 

The kistvaens (underground stone chambers or vaults) 
are called by natives Pandu kulis, or pits of the Pandava 
heroes of the Mahabharata. According to tradition, they 
were constructed for the purpose of concealing treasure, 



and this may possibly account for so many of them having 
been ransacked. It is further beheved that spells were 
placed over them as a guard, the strongest of which was to 
bury a man alive in the vault, and order his ghost to pro- 
tect the treasure against robbers. 

The dolmens, or stone tables of upright stones with a 
cap-stone resting on them, are believed to have been built 
by a race of Pandava dwarfs a cubit high, who were never- 

Fig. 48. Dolmens on the Nilgiris. 

theless able to lift the huge stones with ease. The dolmens 
on the Nilgiri hills are supposed to have been made by a 
race of pygmies, assisted by hares and porcupines. The 
Badagas of the Nilgiris have turned the dolmens into 
sacred places, not looking on them as temples, but as 
actual gods. When it was proposed to remove some of 
the stones to a museum, the Badagas remonstrated, saying, 
" They are our gods." Close to the village of Bethalhada 
is a row of dolmens, carved with figures of human beings, 


animals, the sun and moon, etc., and enclosed within a 
stone circle, which the Badagas claim to have been the 
work of their ancestors, to whom periodical offerings are 
made. At the time of my visit, there were within one 
of the dolmens a conch shell, lingam, bell, and flowers. 
The jungle Kurumbas of the Nllgiris are said to come up 
annually to worship at a dolmen on the higher hills, in 
which one of their gods is believed to reside. It is on 
record that some Kurumbas, who burn their dead, deposit 
a bone and a small round stone in the savu mane (death 
house), which is an old dolmen. Writing concerning the 
Kurumbas and Irulas of the Nllgiris, Mr M. J. Walhouse 
says that " after every death among them, they bring a long 
water-worn stone, and put it into one of the old cromlechs 
(dolmens), which are sprinkled over the Nllgiri plateau. 
Some of the larger of these have been found piled up to 
the cap-stone with such pebbles, which nmst have been the 
work of generations. Occasionally, too, the tribes men- 
tioned make small cromlechs, for burial purposes, and 
place the long water-worn pebbles in them. On the 
higher ranges in Travancore, there are three of the so- 
called cairns of Parasurama where the Mala (hill) Arraiyans 
still keep lamps burning. They make miniature cromlechs 
of small slabs of stone, and place within them a long pebble 
to represent the dead." The conjecture has been made 
that the construction of these miniature dolmens is an echo 
from remote times, which keeps up the tradition of a 
primeval usage, when the hill tribes were a great race. 

The possible connection of the jungle Kurumbas with 
the more civilised Kuruba shepherd caste of the plains, 
between whom there is a marked difference in physical 
characters, has long been a disputed question. It is 
interesting, therefore, to note that, in the North Arcot 
district, the temples of the Kurubas are sometimes " rude, 
low structures supported upon rough stone pillars, with a 



small inner shrine, where the idols are placed during 
festival time. A stone wall encloses a considerable space 
round the temple, and this is covered with small structures 
(miniature dolmens) formed of four flat stones, three being 
walls, and the fourth the roof For each person of rank, 
one of these monuments is constructed, and here periodically, 
and always during the annual feasts, puja (worship) is 
made, not only to the spirits of the deceased chiefs, but 

Fig-. 49. Kuruba dolmen-like graves. 

also to those of all who have died in the clan." In the 
Kuruba quarter of the town of Kadur in Mysore, the 
shrine of Anthargattamma is a regular dolmen beneath a 
margosa {Melia A zadiracJita) tree, in which the goddess is 
represented by round stones imbedded in a mound of 
earth. Just outside the same town, close to a sacred fig 
tree (pipal, Ficus religiosd), are two small dolmen-like 
structures, in which two Kuruba Dasaris, one a centenarian, 
are buried. 


Dolmens of the type called holed dolmens are found in 
large numbers in the Deccan, and elsewhere. Concerning 
these, Mr W. Crooke writes that " many explanations of 
the meaning of these holes in the door-stone have been 
given — that they are intended as a means of exit for the 
ghost, when it feels disposed to leave its home ; that they 
are a means of passing in offerings of food or other articles 
for the comfort of the ghost ; that they illustrate the habit 
of creeping through an orifice or narrow entrance to a 
cave or structure of the kind, which is supposed to be 
efficacious for the cure of disease." 

The excavations carried out in the " cairns, cromlechs, 
and barrows " of the Nilgiris by Mr J. W. Breeks, when 
Commissioner of the district, brought to light a splendid 
series of unique pottery jars, iron implements, agate and 
carnelian beads, bronze vases and bowls, etc. The bulk 
of the collection is now exhibited in the Madras Museum. 
The pottery jars are surmounted by lids, on which are 
modelled grotesque representations of human beings and 
animals. Concerning these figurines, Mr Foote writes that 
" those representing men and women are extremely in- 
teresting from the light they throw upon the stage of 
civilization their makers had attained to, for they illustrate 
the fashion of the garments as also of the ornaments they 
wore, and of the arms and implements carried by them. 
The animals they had domesticated, those they chased, 
and others that they probably worshipped, are all indicated." 
Among the most interesting figures are those of bearded 
men riding on horses, and large-horned buffaloes, which 
might have been modelled from the Toda buffaloes of the 
present day, and like these, at funerals, and the migrations 
of the sacred herd from place to place, bear a bell round 
the neck. 

It was noted by Mr Breeks that the characteristic 
feature of the Nilgiri cairns and barrows is the circle of 

» J^ 

Fig. 50. Pottery from excavations on the Nilgiris. 


and to the rules of design based upon Hindu philosophy 
laid down in the Silpa Sastras, the canonical books of 
Indian builders and craftsmen. 

The gopurams or gate-towers, which in the later more 
ornate examples are decorated from the base to the summit 
with sculptures of the Hindu Pantheon, increase in size 
with the size of the walled quadrangles, the outer ones 
becoming imposing landmarks, which are visible for miles 
around, and are strikingly similar to the pylons of Egyptian 
temples. Among the most splendid of these temples is 
that at Chidambaram with its beautiful porch and hall of a 
thousand columns ; Srirangam with its fourteen lofty gate- 
towers ; Madura with its pillared hall and characteristic 
Dravidian sculptures, known as Tirumala Nayak's choultry 
from the king of that name who built it ; Ramesvaram 
with magnificent corridors 4000 feet in length. Excepting 
small portions, all of these, as they now exist, are of com- 
paratively modern date, i.e. from about the sixteenth 
century downwards, as a great deal of the older work was 
destroyed in the Muhammadan invasions of Southern 
India, and subsequently restored. 

At Vijayanagar in the Bellary district there are very 
extensive remains of a great city, still containing many 
remarkable buildings of the later Dravidian style, founded 
by a Hindu dynasty which, from the 14th to the i6th 
century, successfully resisted the Moghul sovereigns of the 

At Sravana Belgola in Mysore, besides the remarkable 
colossal figure (p. 153), there is an interesting group of 
temples of the Jain sect, dating from about the 12th century, 
which also belong to the Dravidian style. These, and other 
temples in the Canarese districts of the west coast, are 
distinguished by their lofty and very beautiful stambhas 
or carved obelisks resembling those found near Buddhist 
stupas, which are placed outside the entrances. In Hindu 
■i'- 1 1 


temples such pillars are called dipdans, and are surmounted 
by a sacrificial lamp, but the Jains place images, or some- 
times a miniature shrine, at the top of them. 

The districts of the west coast have a style of temple 
architecture distinct from any other part of Southern 
India, but very similar to that of Nepal and other sub- 
Himalayan districts. The roofs so far resemble the Buddhist 
and Dravidian type that they are built in stories gradually 
diminishing towards the top ; but, being entirely of wood 
or thatched, they are sloping instead of being terraced, 
and have deep projecting eaves supported by brackets. 
The substructure is of stone, with richlv carved columns 
supporting the roof The Jain temples at Mudabidri in 
South Canara, built in the 15th century, are typical 

The Hindu style of architecture which is intermediate 

between the Northern and Southern styles, and called 

Chalukyan by Fergusson, belongs properly to the Deccan, 

though some fine examples of it are found in Mysore, and 

in the Canarese districts of the Madras Presidency. In 

this style the vimana, or shrine, remains the dominant 

architectural feature, but, instead of being square at the 

base, as in the Dravidian type, it becomes more and more 

polygonal and circular, until the plan at last is like the 

opened petals of a lotus. The roof also, instead of being 

in distinct stories and pyramidal, is stepped, and tends to 

resemble the curved spire, or sikhara, of the Northern 

Hindu style. The exquisitely carved doorways of the 

Chalukyan temples are particularly noticeable. The purest 

examples of the style date from the loth to the I2th 

century A.D. The temple of Kuruvatti on the Tunga- 

bhadra river, not far from Harpanahalli, is one of the best. 

The famous temples at Halebid and Somnathpur in Mysore, 

though designed on a much larger and more imposing 

plan, belong to the later decadent style. 

Fig. 59. Temple Stambha, South Canara. 



There are no important monuments of Moghul or Indo- 
Saracenic architecture in Southern India, though in Kurnool, 
on the borders of the Nizam's territory, a few Muham- 
madan mosques show the fine style which originated in 
the Deccan under the Bijapur dynasties of the i6th and 
17th centuries. The Darya Daulat, Tipu Sultan's palace, 
and the tombs of the short-lived Muhammadan dynasty of 
Mysore at Seringapatam, are fairly good specimens of i8th 
century architecture, but cannot compare with similar 
buildings of the same period in Northern India. 

The traditions of the Hindu temple builders are still 
alive in the south, as well as in other parts of India, the 
best Indian craftsmen being always the master masons, 
wood and metal-workers, attached to the temple service. 
In recent years, a considerable impetus has been given to 
the building craft of Southern India by the Nattukottai 
Chettis (bankers) towards the restoration and extension of 
South Indian temples. The building of a new palace for 
the Maharaja of Mysore, and of important public offices in 
Madras from designs by European architects, and conse- 
quently purely eclectic in their Indian style, give promise 
of a coming revival of indigenous architecture in the south. 

None of the royal palaces of Southern India are older 
than the sixteenth century, when wooden construction was 
almost entirely superseded by brick and stone, and the 
Saracenic arch began to be used by the Hindu builders. 
The most interesting of these palaces are at Vijayanagar, 
Chandragiri in the North Arcot district, and at Madura, 
where the splendid hall of Tirumala Nayak's palace is now 
used as a Court of Justice. The palace of Tanjore, built 
in the i8th and 19th centuries, is a very degenerate mixture 
of Italian and Indian styles. 

Many good examples of domestic architecture, dis- 
tinguished by fine doorways, verandahs, and cloistered 
inner courtyards, with elegaxitly carved pillars and brackets. 

Fig. 60. Indian architect, with elevation of a new temple 
drawn on a w^all. 


are to be found in every considerable town in Southern 
India, but the wealthy English-educated Indian of the 
present day, despising his own art, affects a style of house 
devoid of any kind of architectural distinction, which is a 
more or less bad copy of Anglo-Indian buildings. There 
is, however, a reaction of feeling among the more enlightened 
Indians against a slavish imitation of European fashions, 
which may eventually lead to a new style of Indian 
domestic architecture being founded on the basis of the 
old by an intelligent adaptation of the living Indian craft 
traditions to the needs and habits of modern life. 

The hill fortresses scattered over many South Indian 
districts are interesting memorials of medieval and later 
times, when rival Hindu dynasties were fighting against 
each other, or resisting the Musalman invaders from the 
north, or when British, French, Dutch, and Portuguese, 
were struggling for supremacy in India. But, though 
some are considerable in size, none of them are to be 
compared as architecture with similar military works in 
Northern India. Several of the Hindu temples, like those 
at Tanjore and Vellore, both of which are distinguished by 
very fine architectural sculpture, are enclosed by fortifica- 
tions, which have been the scene of eventful struggles in 
the history of British India, but these too are insignificant 
as architecture. 



The sequence of events, commencing with the first 
arrival of the Portuguese, which led up to the supremacy 
of the British, and the constitution of the Madras Presi- 
dency and Mysore in their present form, is briefly set out 


in the following chronological summary of the principal 

1498. The Portuguese navigator, Vasco da Gama, 
arrived off the coast of Malabar, and anchored near Calicut. 
The quinquecentenary of the event was celebrated at 
Calicut in 1898. The first land sighted by Vasco da Gama 
is said to have been Mount Delly, a conspicuous hill near 
the coast, which was called by the Portuguese Monte d'Eli. 
The name is said to be derived from the Malayalam eli 
mala (high hill), or from the ancient Eli State in Malabar. 

1502. Second voyage of Vasco da Gama to Malabar, 
and establishment of a factory at Cochin. 

1503. Pedro Alvares Cabral was placed in charge of 
an expedition, and came to Calicut and Cochin. 

1503. Albuquerque assisted the Cochin Raja by de- 
feating the Zamorin of Calicut, and received sanction for 
the construction of a fort, which was called Manoel after 
the reigning King of Portugal. The names Da Gama, 
Cabral, i\lbuquerque, and many others, whose exploits are 
handed down to posterity in the Indo-Portuguese archives, 
survive among Eurasians of the west coast to the present 

1565. Battle of Talikota, at which the great Hindu 
kingdom of Vijayanagar, which extended from the Kistna 
to Cape Comorin, was overthrown by the Muhammadans. 
The reigning sovereign, Rama Raya, was taken prisoner, 
and decapitated. 

1600. The first Royal Charter was issued for estab- 
lishing an East India Company, in consequence of the 
commercial rivalry between London and Amsterdam, the 
Dutch having in the previous year raised the price of 
pepper against the English from 3^-. to 6s. and Si", per 
pound. The Company was incorporated under the title 
of the Governor and Company of Merchants of London 
trading into the East Indies, and five ships were chartered 

1 68 


for the first voyage. Special silver coins, bearing the arms 
of Queen Elizabeth and the Tudor portcullis, were struck 
for the use of the Company. 

1602. A priest of the Syrian Christians of St Thomas 
was sent by the Portuguese Bishop of Malabar to Todamala 
(the Nllgiri hills), to investigate a race — the Todas — who 
were supposed to be descendants of the Christians of St 
Thomas. In the following year, Father Yacome Finicio 
was deputed thither on a similar mission. 

1602 — 9. Certain private Dutch Companies were 
amalgamated into the Vereenigde Oost-Indische Com- 

,^ - •v?Tr»:;ri-.v 

< , - . I oj o^> ,;- A> Va 

Fig. 61. Portcullis money of Queen Elizabeth. 

pagnie, or United Dutch East India Company. Pulicat 
on the east coast was the site of the earliest settlement of 
the Dutch, who built there a fort, which the\' called Castel 
Geldria. Just as the Portuguese struck coins with the 
initial G for Goa and D for Diu, so the Dutch struck 
copper coins bearing the initial letter P for Pulicat, and N 
for Negapatam. Dutch coins, called duits and half-duits 
or challis, bearing on one side the monogram V.O.C, and 
on the other the arms of Zeeland, Friseland (Frisia), Holland, 
Utrecht, and Gelderland, are met with in large quantities 
in the bazars, and are still to some extent current on the 
west coast. 


161 1. Captain Hippon, of the sliip "Globe," founded 
English settlements or agencies at Nizampatam and Ma- 

1620. A treaty was concluded between Denmark, which 
had despatched ships to the east, and the Nayak of Tan- 
javur (Tanjore), b\' which Tranquebar was ceded to the 
Danes. A fort called Dansborg was built, and a factory 
established. Coins struck by the Danes in India bear the 
initials DB, or TB, standing for Dansborg and Tranquebar. 

1625. The English under Francis Day founded a 
trading establishment at Dugarazupatnam, and called it 
Armagon or Armeghon after a friendly local chief named 
Arumuga Mudaliyar. 

1628 — 32. On account of the oppression which was 
experienced at the hands of the Native Governor, it was 
resolved in 1628 to abandon the factory at Masulipatam. 
The representation of the Agent at Bantam to the Presi- 
dent and Council at Surat (in Bombay) of the necessity 
of being supplied with Coromandel cloth, to furnish that 
station and the southern markets with the means of in- 
creasing their investments in pepper and spices, gave rise 
to a decision, in 1632, to re-establish the factory at Masuli- 
patam, and to strengthen Armagon. This was effected by 
a firman from the King of Golconda, called the Golden 

1639. Francis Day, struck with the quality and prices 
of the cloths at Madraspatam, as compared with those of 
Armagon, obtained through a subordinate of the Raja of 
Chandragiri, a representative of the old Vijayanagar dynasty, 
a lease of the revenues of the locality, and permission to 
build a fort, which was named Fort St George. The 
necessity for this fort was impressed on the East India 
Company in a letter stating that " it hath been a continued 
tenet among as many of your servants as have been 
emplo)'ed in these parts that goods, especially paintings 











{i.e. prints, chintzes) cannot be procured, nor secured when 
acquired, unless you have some place of \'our own to 
protect the workmen from the frequent enforcements of 
these tyrannous governors, and to lodge your goods free 
of the mischievous attempts which these treacherous Gen- 
tues are too often ready to adfer against them." The 
name Gentou is said to be a corruption of Gentio, a 
gentile or heathen, which the Portuguese applied to the 
Hindus in contradistinction to the Moros or Moors, i.e. 
Muhammadans. It has been suggested that the reason 
why the term Gentoo became specifically applied to the 
Telugu people is because, when the Portuguese arrived in 
Southern India, the Telugu kingdom of Vijayanagar was 
dominant. In the records of the seventeenth century, the 
Black Town of Madras is referred to as Gentue Town. 

1642. Cardinal Richelieu founded a French Company, 
on the lines of the Dutch Company, which did not have a 
prosperous career. 

1653. P'ort St George was raised to the rank of a 
separate Presidency, independent of Bantam in Java. 

1658. Negapatam, which was one of the earliest 
settlements of the Portuguese on the Coromandel coast, 
was taken by the Dutch. 

1663. The town and fort of Cochin were captured 
from the Portuguese by the Dutch, assisted by the Raja of 
Cochin. Between 1661 and 1664, the Dutch also drove 
the Portuguese from Ouilon, Cannanore, and other places 
on the west coast. 

1664. The French statesman Colbert reconstituted the 
French Company, under the name of the Compagnie des 
Indes Orientales. This Company lasted till 1719, and was 
then united to the Compagnie d'Occident for trade with 
Louisiana, under the title of the Compagnie perpetuelle 
des Indes. 

1669. The Moghul Emperor Aurangzlb issued a firman. 


permitting the French to have a factory at Masulipatam. 
Coins were struck here by the French later on, bearing the 
name MachHpatan, and the regnal year of the Moghul 
Emperors Ahmad Shah and Alamgir II. 

1672. The Frenchman Caron seized Saint Thome (now 
a suburb of Madras) from the Dutch, to whom it was restored 
two years later. 

1683. Francois Martin took up his abode at Pondi- 
cherry, which was purchased from the Raja of Gingee, and 
fortified it. 

1686 — 90. The Dutch took possession of Masulipatam, 
putting restrictions on the English trade "on purpose to 
lay the English low in the e}'es of the natives, according to 
their usual treatment." Three years later, Zu-1-Fikar Khan, 
the Moghul Commander-in-Chief in the Carnatic, seized 
the factory, and, in 1690, the full right of trade at Masuli- 
patam was secured by the English from the Emperor 

1690. The fort at Devanapatam, Thevnapatam, or 
Tegnapatam, close to Cuddalore, which was re-named Fort 
St David, was purchased by the English from the Marathas 
with the surrounding country " within the randome shott 
of a great gun." The name Fort St David was probably 
given by Elihu Yale, Governor of Madras (1687 — 92), who 
was a Welshman, in honour of the patron saint of Wales. 

1692. Zu-1-Fikar Khan was created first Nawab of 
the Carnatic by Aurangzlb. Elihu Yale helped him with 
war materials, and, in return, he procured a firman from 
the Moghul Emperor, by which the villages of Egmore, 
Pursewaukum, and Royapuram (now districts in the city 
of Madras) were secured to the East India Company. 

1693 — 99. Pondicherry was taken from the French by 
the Dutch, and restored to them by the Treaty of Ryswick 
in 1699, when Francois Martin was appointed Governor. 

1 70 1. The iLnglish East India Company and London 


East India Company, between which there had been great 
rivalry during the last few years, came to terms, and 
assumed the title of the United Company of Merchants of 
England trading to the East Indies, commonly known as 
the Honourable East India Company. The title Honour- 
able English Company in Persian characters occurs on some 
of the gold coins. The bale-mark of the United Company, 
with the initials V.E. I.C., is reproduced on many of the 
copper coins. Other coins, which were struck long after the 
establishment of the new Company, bear the initials G.C.E. 
which are presumably those of the original Governor and 
Company of Merchants trading to the East Indies. 

1725. The French settled at Mayazhi in Malabar, 
which was re-named Mahe after Mahe de la Bourdonnais. 

1 74 1. Husain Dost Khan, better known as Chanda 
Sahib, a son-in-law of Dost /\li Khan, Nawab of the 
Carnatic, was defeated by the Marathas at Trichinopoly, 
and taken prisoner to Satara. In this year, Dupleix 
became Governor of Pondicherry, and subsequently pro- 
claimed himself Nawab of the Moghul Empire. It has 
been suggested that a series of copper coins, bearing the 
French P"leur-de-lis and Gallic cock, and the word Vijaya 
(victory) and other legends, may have been struck in 
honour of the French by some Native Prince impressed by 
the power of the French arms during the government of 
Dupleix, or were possibly struck by the French them- 

1742. Sanction to coin Arcot (Arkat) rupees was 
given to the East India Company by Nawab Saadatullah 
Khan, Subah of Arcot. The Arcot rupees, and their 
fractions, struck in the name of the Moghul Emperor 
Alamgir, " in the sixth year of his propitious reign," were 
long current in the Madras Presidency. It was not till 
1835, in the reign of William IV, that the British struck 
coins in India, bearing the ef^gy of the reigning monarch. 


1746. Mahe de la Bourdonnais, who had equipped a 
fleet at his own expense, besieged Madras, which sur- 
rendered. The Governor, Nicholas Morse, a descendant of 
Cromwell, and the chief merchants, were carried off as 
prisoners to Pondicherry. Robert Clive, at that time a 
young civilian, escaped to Fort St David, and obtained an 
Ensign's commission. 

1749. Fort St George was restored to the English 
under the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle, and taken possession 
of by Admiral Boscawen ("old Dreadnought"). In this 
year, Chanda Sahib, whose release from prison had been 
obtained by Dupleix, was, with the support of the French, 
proclaimed Nawab of the Carnatic. Three years later, he 
was put to death by the Raja of Tanjore, and his head was 
sent to Muhammad Ali, the British candidate for the office 
of Nawab. 

1750. Masulipatam, with the surrounding country, was 
given to the French by the Nizam, and, from 1753 to 1759, 
the English were excluded. 

175 I. Clive was besieged by an army under Chanda 
Sahib's son in the fort of Arcot, and, after a siege of fifty 
days, the enemy was compelled to retire. For his brilliant 
services during the siege, Clive was pronounced by Pitt " a 
heaven-born genius." 

1752. Captain John Dalton, the commandant at Trichi- 
nopoly, defended the town on behalf of Muhammad Ali 
against the Regent of Mysore and the Maratha Morari 
Rao, till he was relieved by Stringer Lawrence. 

1753. The whole of the Northern Circars were handed 
over to the French by the Subadar, or Moghul Viceroy of 
the Deccan. In this year, the French were defeated by 
Stringer Lawrence on the plain near Trichinopoly close to 
the spot now known as Fakir's Rock, at the battle of the 
Golden Rock. Iron cannons and shot found at Trichi- 
nopoly, and preserved in the Madras Museum, are probably 

Fig-. 63. Stringer Lawrence and Nawab Walajah. 


relics of the fighting round Fakir's Rock. A painting in 
the Banqueting Hall, Madras, represents Lawrence walking 
wdth Nawab VValajah of the Carnatic on the island of 
Srirangam near Trichinopoly. Copper coins struck by the 
Nawabs bear the name Walajah or Wala in Persian or Tamil. 

1756. Clive appointed Governor of Fort St David. 

1757- Vizagapatam, where an English factory was 
founded in the seventeenth century, surrendered to the 
French General Bussy. At a nautch in the fort of the 
Mandasa zamindar in honour of Sir Mountstuart Grant Duff 
when Governor of Madras (1881 — 6), the dancing-girls 
danced to the French air of Malbrook se va t'en guerre, 
which must have been originally learnt from the French 
troops under Bussy. 

1758. Colonel Forde defeated the French under the 
Marquis de Conflans at the decisive battle of Condore near 
Pithapuram in Vizagapatam. The French General Thomas 
Arthur Lally, son of an Irish officer who emigrated to 
France, besieged Madras. An old house, recently dis- 
mantled in the course of additions to the Madras Christian 
College, which contained an extensive series of elaborately 
carved wooden beams, lintels, etc., was, according to tradition, 
occupied by Lally during the siege. 

1759. Comte d'Ache, who commanded the French 
Navy in India, was defeated off Fort St David, and is said 
to have lost in a few months the French cause in Southern 

1760. Colonel (afterwards Sir) Eyre Coote defeated 
Lally at the battle of Wandiwash in North Arcot. Colonel 
Forde captured Masulipatam, and the Subadar of the 
Deccan made a treaty, agreeing to drive out the French. 
The treaty was ratified by a firman from the Moghul 
Emperor in 1765, and a further treaty with the Subadar 
in the following year, by which the English acquired the 
whole of the Northern Circars. 


1761. Pondicherry surrendered to the English, who 
destroyed the town and fortifications. Lally was sent to 
England as a prisoner of war. The Frenchman Claude 
Martin deserted to the English. He subsequently amassed 
a large fortune, built a palatial residence at Lucknovv called 
Constantia (now La Martinicre), and became a Major- 

1763. Pondicherry restored to the French b}' the Peace 
of Paris. 

1766. Haidar Ali, who had deposed the reigning Raja 
of Mysore, conquered Malabar. 

1769. Warren Hastings appointed second in Council 
at Madras. 

1778. Pondicherry once more fell into the hands of 
the English under Hector Munro. 

1780. Commencement of the first Mysore war, which 
lasted till 1784. When attempting to join Munro's army, 
Colonel Baillie was taken prisoner by Haidar. He was 
sent to Seringapatam, where he died in captivity two years 

1 78 1 — 2. Haidar Ali was defeated by Eyre Coote at 
Porto Novo, and also lost heavily at the battle of Sholingur. 
He dieci in 1782, and was succeeded by his son Tipu 
Sultan. A gold pagoda struck by the Danes bears on the 
obverse the crowned monogram of King Christian VH, 
and on the reverse the Persian letter ?>- (Haidar's initial). 
This coin, it has been suggested, tends to show that the 
Danish power in the East did homage to the Mysore 
usurper, consistently with the unambitious policy of peace 
adopted by them in dealing with the dominant Indian 
powers. Tipu retained his father's initial on his gold and 
silver coins, devised new names for the mint towns, intro- 
duced on the coins a special era commencing from the 
birth instead of the hijra of Mohammed, and employed 
a new method of expressing the date by a system of 

T. 12 


alphabetical numeration. Seeing the bale-mark of the East 
India Company on the arms captured from the English, he 
imitated it on his own muskets and cannon, but replaced 
the initials V^. E.I.C. by his father's name. 

1783. Pondicherry, and the other French factories, 
were restored to the French by the Treaty of Versailles. 

1790 — 92. Second Mysore war. Seringapatam was 
besieged by the English, led by the Governor-General, the 
Marquis Cornwallis, and Tipu ceded the country round 
Dindigul, and the districts of Salem and Malabar. 

1793. On the breaking out of war in Europe between 
France and England, the French Possessions in India were 
once more taken by the English. 

1794. The Raja of Vizianagram was defeated by the 
English at the battle of Padmanabham. The country 
ceded to the Company was governed by a Chief and 
Council at Vizagapatam, which was divided into three 

1795. On the conquest of Holland by the French, the 
Dutch factories and possessions were handed over to the 
East India Company. They comprised three groups, 
those on the Coromandel coast, with head-quarters at 
Pulicat ; those on the Madura coast, as it was called, with 
head -quarters at Tuticorin ; and those on the Malabar 
coast, with head-quarters at Cochin. 

1799. Third Mysore war. Tipu Sultan was slain at 
the storming of Seringapatam. The storming party was 
led by General David Baird, who some years previously 
had been imprisoned by Haidar Ali at Seringapatam. On 
the day of the battle, which, being the last day of a lunar 
month, was inauspicious, an astrologer repeated the un- 
favourable omen to Tipu. It is recorded that "to different 
Bramins he gave a black buffalo, a milch buffalo, a male 
buffalo, a black she-goat, a jacket of coarse black cloth, a 
cap of the same material, ninet}^ rupees, and an iron pot 






12 : 


filled with oil ; and, previous to the delivery of this last 
article, he held his head over the pot for the purpose of 
seeing the image of his face; a ceremon)' used in Hindo- 
stan to avert misfortune." 

An officer took from off the right arm of the dead body 
of Tlpu a talisman, consisting of a charm made of metal, 
and some manuscripts in magic Arabic and Persian charac- 
ters, sewed up in pieces of flowered silk. The standards, 
which were taken at Seringapatam, were brought home 
for the King of England by General Harris, who subse- 
quently became the first Lord Harris. After its capture, at 
which he was in command of the reserve, Arthur Wellesley 
(the first Duke of Wellington) was placed in charge of 
Seringapatam, and appointed to the military and political 
command in Mvsore. The British Government restored 
the Hindu Raj of Mysore, and placed on the throne 
Krishna Raja Wodeyar, with Purnaiya as Regent during 
his minority. The British share of Tipu's territories in- 
cluded Canara, Coimbatore, and the Wynaad. 

1800. The Cuddapah, Bellary, Anantapur, and Kurnool 
districts, which had fallen to the share of the Nizam in the 
re-distribution of territory after the death of Tlpu, were 
ceded to the British by Azim-ud-daula, Nawab of the 

1 801. The French possessions were restored to the 
French, but again taken away in the following year by the 
Treaty of Amiens, which was signed on behalf of England 
by the Marquis Cornwallis. 

1808. Tranquebar, with the other Danish settlements, 
was taken by the British, but restored in 18 14. 

1 8 14 — 15. By the treaties of these years, Pondicherry, 
and the other factories, were restored to the French. 

1 83 1. The Mysore Raja deposed, and his territories 
administered by a British Commission. 

1839. The territories of the Nawab of Kurnool, who 


had been guilty of treasonable intrigues, annexed by the 

1845. Tranquebar, and the other Danish settlements, 
were purchased by the East India Company. In the 
collection of arms transferred from Tranquebar to the 
arsenal of Fort St George, and now in the Madras Museum, 
are several large guns bearing the monogram C 7 of the 
Danish King, Christian the Seventh. 

1855. On the death of the last Nawab of the Carnatic, 
Ghulam Muhammad Ghaus Khan, Azim Jah, and other 
members of the Carnatic family, became pensioners of the 
Government. Some years later, the title of Prince of 
Arcot was conferred on Azim Jah and his descendants. 

.1881. Rendition of Mysore (p. 6). 



The administration of the Madras Presidency is at the 
present time vested in the Governor and three members 
of the Executive Council, all of whom are appointed by 
the Crown for a period of five years. Of the members of 
Council, two belong to the Indian Civil or Covenanted 
Service, and the third is an Indian of distinction. The 
term Covenanted Civilian is a survival from the days of 
the East India Company, whose servants entered into a 
covenant therewith, as the Civil Servants, and many other 
Government officials, do at the present day with the 
Secretary of State for India. The name Competition 
Wallah has been applied to those who entered the Civil 
Service by the system of competitive examination, which 
was introduced in 1856. The East India College at 


Haileybury was closed in the following year. Prior to the 
abolition of the appointment, the Commander-in-Chief of 
Madras was a member of the Executive Council. The 
addition of an Indian member thereto was brought about 
by the India Councils Act of 1909, when Lord Minto was 
Viceroy and Lord Morley Secretary of State, b)^ which it 
was enacted that the Council shall not exceed four, of 
whom two at least shall be persons who have been in the 
service of the Crown in India for at least twelve years. 
The first Indian to hold ofifice was the Maharaja of Bobbili. 
All Orders of Government are issued in the name of His 
Excellency the Governor in Council. The work of the 
Council is distributed among the members, who are assisted 
by Secretaries. The Departments of the Secretariat are 
divided into : — (a) political, financial, ecclesiastical, marine, 
and pensions ; (d) revenue ; (c) local, municipal, educa- 
tional, and legislative ; (d) public works, including roads 
and buildings, irrigation, and railways. For the purpose of 
making laws, subject to confirmation by the Governor- 
General and the Secretary of State, the Governor presides 
over a Legislative Council, composed of the members of 
the Executive Council, and a number of members, official 
and non-ofificial. Of the non-official members, some are 
nominated, and others elected. The revenue administration 
is carried out by the Board of Revenue, which has control 
over matters connected with the land revenue, revenue 
settlement, land records and agriculture, forests, salt, abkari 
(excise), customs, stamps, income-tax, etc. 

For the purpose of general administration, the Presi- 
dency is divided into twenty-four districts. The principal 
district officers are the Collector (i.e. of revenue) and 
District Magistrate, and the District and Sessions Judge. 
The Collector is assisted in his manifold duties by the 
Divisional Officers and Assistants, Executive Engineer, 
District Forest Officer, District Medical Officer, and 


Superintendent of Police. The subdivisions of the district 
are divided into taluks in charge of native Tahsildars 
or revenue officers (tahsil, collection). " The ultimate 
unit," it has been said, "for all fiscal and administrative 
purposes is the village. Each of these has a headman, 
who is responsible for the due collection of the revenue, 
and possesses small judicial powers ; an accountant 
(Karnam, or Shanbog), who maintains all its records, and 
a varying number of menial servants under the orders of 
these two officers. Succession to these village offices is 
usually hereditary, and the powers and duties of their 
incumbents have undergone but little change since the 
earliest days of which history gives us any account." 
Among the powers of the village headman is still that of 
confining persons belonging to the lower classes in the 
stocks for trivial offences, such as using abusive language, 
or inconsiderable assaults or affrays. 

The time-honoured panchayat (panch, five), or council 
of five members of the community to arbitrate on caste 
disputes and questions affecting the interests of the village, 
has in some measure degenerated in recent times. Liti- 
gants now resort freely to the British Courts, and employ 
vakils to plead their cause, with a resultant expenditure of 
much money. 

The larger towns in the Presidency are governed by 
Municipal Councils, composed of ex officio members, and 
members nominated by Government and elected by the 

The Government of Madras is represented in the Native 
States of Travancore and Cochin by a British Resident, 
who has official Residencies in both States. He is also 
Collector of the isolated British settlements of Anjengo 
and Tangasseri. The British Resident of Mysore, who has 
official relations with the Government of India, is also 
Chief Commissioner of Coorg. The administration of 


Mysore, Travancore, and Cochin is conducted by a Dlwan 
or Prime Minister, who is, in Mysore, Travancore, and 
Pudukkottai, assisted in ascertaining the views of the 
people by a Popular or Representative Assembly, com- 
posed of members representing various classes of the 
community and interests. In Mysore, the Dlwan has the 
assistance of Councillors, and Pudukkottai is administered 
by a Council, composed of the Raja, the Dlwan, and a 
Councillor. The divisions of Travancore, Cochin, and 
Pudukkottai are administered by Dlwan Peshkars, who 
correspond to the Collectors of the British districts, and 
the Deputy Commissioners of Mysore. The States of 
Pudukkottai, Banganapalle, and Sandur have respectively 
as Political Agents the Collectors of the adjacent British 
districts of Trichinopoly, Kurnool, and Bellary. The 
Banganapalle State has, in recent times, been managed by 
a member of the Indian Civil Service, entitled the Assistant 
Political Agent. 

The administration of Pondicherry is vested in the 
Governor, and a Council composed of official and non- 
official members. A General Council, composed of repre- 
sentatives elected by universal suffrage in the five French 
settlements of Pondicherry, Karikal, Yanam, Mahe, and 
Chandernagore (in Bengal), meets annually at Pondicherry. 
The settlements other than Pondicherry, to which they are 
subordinate, are administered by local Governors or Chefs 
de Service. A Senator and Deputy are elected by uni- 
versal suffrage by the five settlements, to represent them 
in the Chambers at Paris. 



The chief lines of communication in the Madras 
Presidency by means of roads, which were originally made 
to satisfy military requirements, are the northern road 
from Madras to Calcutta, the southern to the Travancore 
frontier, and the western to Calicut in Malabar. Tipu 
Sultan is said to have been the pioneer of the roads in 
Malabar, making, in the course of his campaigns, an 
extensive chain of roads, which connected all the principal 
places of Malabar, and pervaded the wildest parts of the 
country. Traffic along the roads is mainly carried on by 
means of springless bullock-carts, and two-w^heeled covered 
boxes with Venetian windows called jutkas (jhatka, swift), 
drawn by country-bred ponies or tattoos (tats). The 
palanquin of former days is now only found in out-of-the- 
way places ; but I have travelled along the high road in 
South Canara in a muncheel or hammock-litter with a 
cover to keep off the sun and rain, carried on the shoulders 
of coolies. The name Boy, applied by Anglo-Indians to 
their domestic servants, is derived from the Bestha or Boyi 
caste, which was, in former times, employed in carrying 
palanquins. Thus it is recorded by Carraccioli, in his 
' Life of Lord Clive,' that the Boys with Colonel Lawrence's 
palankeen, having straggled a little out of the line of 
march, were picked up by the Marathas. Writing in 1563, 
Barros states that " there are men who carry the umbrella 
so dexterously to ward off the sun that, although their 


master trots on his horse, the sun does not touch any part 
of his body, and such men are called Boi." 

The Indian trunk railways were sketched out by Lord 
Dalhousie when Governor-General (1848-56), and his 
schemes included the linking up of Madras with Bombay 
and Calicut. The east coast railway, to connect Madras 
with Calcutta, found a place among the recommendations 
of the Royal Famine Commission (1878-80). Among the 
manifold purposes subserved by railways, are the develop- 
ment of commercial requirements, the lowering of the cost 
of articles imported to the sea-ports, and the transport of 
food-grains, when famine or local distress, from failure of 
the crops, prevails. In times of famine, railway relief works 
give employment to many of those who are affected 

The railways of South India belong to two main 
systems, viz., the Madras and South Mahratta Railway, 
and the South Indian Railway. 

The Madras and South Mahratta Railway forms a 
complex network of main and branch or feeder lines, of 
which it is only possible to refer to the more important 
ones. The north-west line, which connects Madras with 
Bombay, passes through Cuddapah, Tadpatri, Gooty, 
Guntakal, and Adoni, and joins the Great Indian Peninsula 
Railway at Raichur. From Guntakal, a branch line runs 
through Bellary to Hubli. Another line, by which Bombay 
is eventually reached from Madras, passes through Ban- 
galore, Tumkur, Arsikere, and Harihar in the Mysore 
State, and Hubli, and meets the Great Indian Peninsula 
Railway at Poona. Between Jalarpet and Bangalore, the 
line ascends to the Mysore plateau, and a branch line from 
Bowringpet to Marikuppam taps the Mysore gold-fields. 
From Bangalore, a line runs through Seringapatam to 
Mysore, and thence to Nanjangod, the temple at which 
place attracts large numbers of devotees. The north-east 


line, which connects, Madras with Calcutta, passes through 
Nellore, Bezwada, Rajahmundry, and Samalkot, and joins 
the Bengal-Nagpur Railway at Waltair near Vizagapatam. 
From Bezwada, a line runs through Nandyal and Kurnool 
Road to Guntakal, where it joins the north-west line. 
Short lines run from Bezwada and Samalkot respectively 
to Masulipatam and Cocanada on the coast. The Bengal- 
Nagpur Railway passes through Vizianagram, Chicacole 
Road, and Naupada ; and, skirting the Chilka lake, runs 
into Bengal. A line, built by the Raja of Parlakimedi, 
connects the town of Parlakimedi with Naupada. 

The South Indian Railway has two main lines, with 
various branches, which run respectively to the west coast, 
and southward to Tuticorin. The former, with running 
powers from Madras to Jalarpet, passes through Salem, 
Erode, Podanur, and the natural break in the western ghats 
called the Palghat Gap, to Malabar. Striking the coast, 
it runs northward through Calicut, Tellicherry, and Can- 
nanore, to Mangalore in South Canara. For those 
proceeding to Yercaud on the Shevaroy hills, Salem is the 
most convenient station. From Podanur, a line runs 
through Coimbatore to Mettupalaiyam, and there joins the 
rack-rail Nllgiri Mountain Railway, which, winding up the 
ghat through many tunnels, touches at Coonoor and Wel- 
lington, and has its terminus at Ootacamund. The railway 
has displaced the service of vehicles called tongas, drawn 
by horses, by which travellers formerly ascended the ghat 
road. At Shoranur, the main line joins the Shoranur- 
Cochin State Railway from Shoranur to Ernakulam, 
whence the backwater can be crossed to Cochin. The 
southern line, starting from Madras, runs, now near the 
coast and now far inland, to Tuticorin, whence a steamer 
service conveys passengers to Colombo. It is a very 
important pilgrim route, passing as it does, directly or by 
means of its branches, through many towns celebrated for 






their Hindu temples — Conjeeveram, Chidambaram, Kum- 
bakonam, Tanjore, Trichinopoh-, Madura, and Ramesvaram. 
It is estimated that, on the occasion of the Mahamakham 
festival at Kumbakonam, nearh- half a million Hindus are 
present. At Kodaikanal Road, passengers for Kodaikanal 
on the Palni hills alight. The most important branch 
lines are those between \'illupuram and Katpadi, and 

Fig-. 66. Up-country Railway Station. 

Trichinopoly and Erode in the interior ; and those which 
run to Pondicherr}-, Karikal. and Xegapatam on the east 
coast, and to the island of Pamban, on which the Rames- 
varam temple is situated. From Maniyachi a line goes 
through Tinnevelly and x\mbasamudram, from which the 
temple at Papanasam is not far distant, to Ouilon on the 
Travancore coast. The western ghats are pierced by 


several tunnels, one of which, at Ariyankavu, is 2,294 feet 
in length. 

The west coast, from the extreme north of Malabar, 
through the Cochin State, to Trivandrum in Travancore, 
the country of " land-locked water and water-locked land," 
is traversed, with slight intervals, by a chain of navigable 
backwaters or lagoons. These backwaters are connected 
together by a series of artificial canals. Between Trivan- 
drum and Quilon, the Varkala cliffs are pierced by two 
tunnels, respectively 2,364 and 924 feet in length, through 
which the canal passes. The backwaters open into the sea 
at various points, and are either expansions of rivers at 
their mouths, or broad, irregular sheets of water, into which 
the rivers flowing from the western ghats discharge their 
water. Some of the backwaters are of very considerable 
size, the Vembanad backwater in Travancore, for example, 
being 32 miles long and 9 miles broad. The shores of the 
backwaters, and banks of the canals, are often lined with 
extensive coconut plantations, and studded with villages 
and hamlets. The traffic along the water-system is carried 
on by means of cabin-boats rowed by many oars, native 
boats called vallams, which are propelled by poles or 
tattered and torn mat sails, dug-outs or canoes, and other 
small craft. 

The Buckingham Canal is a salt-water navigation canal, 
named after the Duke of Buckingham, a former Governor 
of Madras, in whose term of office its completion was 
undertaken, during the great famine of 1876-8. It extends 
along the east coast 66 miles southward from Madras, 
through which it passes, to Merkanam, and northwards 
195 miles from Madras to Pedda Ganjam, where it com- 
municates with the freshwater canal system of the delta of 
the Kistna river, which again communicates with the canal 
system of the delta of the Godavari. The Buckingham 
Canal is tidal to a great extent when the river bars are 




















open. It runs within three miles of the coast throughout 
its entire length, and, in many parts, separated from the 
sea only by a line of sand-dunes. The traffic along the 
canal consists chiefly of salt from the salt factories, and 
firewood for use in Madras. 

During its course, the Buckingham Canal enters and 
emerges from the Pulicat lake, which is a shallow salt- 
water lagoon, about 37 miles in length. The lake is 
separated from the sea, into which it opens at several 
places, by the island of Sriharikota, and the spit of land on 
which the town of Pulicat stands. 

In the extreme north of the Madras Presidency, the 
Chilka lake, studded in places with green islands, which 
has been described as a gulf of the original Bay of Bengal, 
extends southwards from Bengal into Ganjam. This lake 
is the largest of the sheets of fresh or brackish water called 
tamparas. It consists of an open sheet of water, 44 miles 
long, fed by the Bhargavi and Daya rivers, and separated 
by a ridge of sand from the Bay of Bengal, into which it 
opens by a narrow mouth. At the latter end of the 
eighteenth century, the mouth was so wide that it had to 
be crossed in "large boats." The lake is connected with 
the Rushikulya river by a tidal navigable canal, along 
which grain from Orissa, and salt, are carried in flat- 
bottomed boats, propelled by poles or " crazy mat sails." 



Of the total population, of the Madras Presidency, 
roughly 70 per cent, are engaged in agriculture. The name 
ryat (ra'a, to pasture) is generally applied to a tenant of the 
soil, or individual occupying land as a farmer or cultivator. 


In the Madras Presidency there are two main divisions of 
the land revenue system, called respectively zamindari and 
ryotwari. The former has been defined as a system of 
intermediaries and transferees of interest between the State 
and the cultivator, and is a survival from the days prior to 
the British occupation, when the land was chiefly held by 
zamindars (landholders) and feudal chieftains. Under the 
ryotwari system, which prevails, the settlement for land 
revenue is made directly by the Government agency with 
each individual cultivator holding land, not with the village 
community, nor with the middleman or landlord, payment 
being also received directly from every such individual. 
It is said that a large number of ryats are continuously in 
debt, unable to subsist during the growth of the crop 
except by petty borrowing, and returning at harvest time 
all but a moderate surplus to the creditor. Much has been 
heard, in recent years, of the adaptation of the Raffeisen 
system to Indian requirements, and, during the vice- 
royalty of Lord Curzon, an Act was passed, giving legal 
sanction to the operations of a system of co-operative banks 
and credit societies for the benefit of the humbler classes. 

The agricultural year nearly coincides with the Fasli 
(fasl, season or crop), which commences on ist July. Fasli 
has been defined as the name applied to certain solar eras 
established for use in revenue and other civil transactions, 
under the Muhammadan rulers (including Akbar), to meet 
the inconvenience of the lunar calendar of the Hijra, in its 
want of correspondence with the natural seasons. The 
present year is Fasli 1322. 

The soils of South India are classified as dry, or not 
irrigated ; wet, or irrigated otherwise than from private 
wells ; and garden, or dry land watered from private wells, 
on which dry and wet assessment is charged. Of the 
occupied ryotwari area, 81 per cent, is dry, including 
gardens, and 19 per cent. wet. 


Many cultivated economic plants have been introduced 
from other parts of Asia, from Africa, or from Europe. 
Such, for example, are the cabbage, cauliflower, pomelo, 
peach, betel pepper, niger seed, and Italian millet. Others 
have been supplied from America, and include the pine- 
apple, custard-apple, guava, papaw, chilli, ground-nut, 
potato, sweet potato, and Indian corn. 

Of the gross area of crops cultivated on ryotwari and 
inam lands (rent free, or on a quit rent) a few years ago, 
80 per cent, was devoted to food-grains, which consist of 
cereals, or grains of grasses, and pulses, or seeds of legu- 
minous plants. Of the cereals, the most important are 
rice (247 p.c), cholam (i5"6 p.c), kambu (10 p.c), and ragi 
(5'8 p.c). Rice {Oryza sativa: Tamil, arisi) in the husk 
is called paddy, and the name paddy-field is commonly 
applied to the plot of ground on which rice is growing. 
Cholam {Sorghum vnlgare : the great millet) is not only 
valuable as food for man, but is said to be one of the best 
fodders in the world for milch cattle. Kambu {Pennisetuni 
typhoideinn) is, in many parts of India, the staple food of 
the lower classes. So, too, is ragi {Eleiisine Coracmia), 
which receives its name (raga, red) from the colour of the 
grain. Zea Mays (Indian corn or maize), of which the 
edible heads are called cobs, yields pop-corn, when parched 
in hot sand or over a fire. Dhal {Cajanus ijidicus : pigeon- 
pea) is a highly esteemed pulse, which is sold in the form 
of split peas. It has been suggested that the name is 
derived from the Sanskrit root dal, to divide. Another 
highly valued pulse is Phaseolus Miingo, of which the 
grains are sometimes split, like dhal. Among the pulses 
known as gram (Portuguese, grao, grain), are Dolichos 
bifloms (horse-gram), Dolichos Lablab, and Cicer arietiiiuni 
(chick-pea or Bengal gram). The term gram-fed mutton 
is familiar to Anglo-Indians. The pulse Lens esciiletita 
forms the basis of the food for invalids, called Revalenta. 



The Badagas and Kotas of the Nllgiris cultivate, among 
other crops, bearded wheat, barley, samai {Panicuni 
uiiliare), tenai {Setaria italica : the Italian millet), and 
\s.\v3i\. {Amaranttis paniculatns: red amaranth), which is, in 
its season, a striking feature of the cultivated patches on 
the hills. Among some hill tribes, e.g. the Kondhs of 
Ganjam, the chief feature of the dry cultivation is the 
destructive practice of shifting cultivation called kumari 
(kumbari, a hill slope of poor soil), or jhum. A strip of 
forest, primeval if possible, as being most fertile, is burnt, 
cultivated, and then deserted for a term of years, during 
which other sites are similarly treated. 

Among the many vegetables which are cultivated is 
the brinjal or egg-plant {Solajium Meloiigena), the egg- 
shaped fruit of which is eaten by Indians and Europeans. 
The edible sweet potato {Iponicea Batatas), called in North 
India shakar kand (sugar-candy), is, in some parts of the 
world, cultivated as a source of sugar. 

The bendikai, vendikai, or lady's fingers {Hibiscus 
esailentiis) is very mucilaginous. A former Collector of a 
district was known as Vendikai Dorai, with reference to 
the sticky nature of the mucilage, as he had the reputation 
of smoothing matters over between conflicting parties. 
The nickname Velakkennai (castor-oil) is given for a 
similar reason. The pods of the sword-bean {Canavalia 
ensiformis), and cow-pea ( Vigna Catjang), constitute the 
French beans of Europeans in India. Onions, and garlic 
{Allium Cepa and A. sativum), are extensively cultivated. 

The several species and varieties of Capsicum (chilli) 
are cultivated for consumption and export. The fruit, 
when dried and powdered, yields the red pepper of 
commerce, and is the basis of various pungent sauces, such 
as Tabasco. The cultivation of the climbing pepper plant 
{Piper nigrum), which grows wild in the forests of the west 
coast, has long been an important industry in Malabar. 


In recent years, a Government farm has been established 
near TelHcherry for the scientific cultivation thereof The 
betel plant {^Piper Betle : vettilai) is largely cultivated 
for the sake of its leaves, which are chewed with areca 
nuts and chunam (lime). There is a very general belief 
in the existence of an imaginary poisonous animal called 
vettila poochi (insect), vettila pampu (snake), or vettila thel 
(scorpion), which may cause illness, or even death, if 
chewed with the leaf. For this reason, the leaf is often 
carefully examined, and dusted with a cloth, before it is 
introduced into the mouth. 

The rhizomes or underground root-like stems of 
Zingiber officinale are the source of ginger, which is sold 
fresh or dried, and exported in large quantities. The 
powdered rhizomes of Citrcuma longa yloid turmeric, which 
is not only used as a food-adjunct, but enters largely into 
Hindu ceremonial observances. In South India, turmeric 
is commonly called saffron. This is, however, obtained 
from the flowers of Crocus sativus. 

Several importantoil-seeds, including castor-oil {Ricinus 
comnuniis) and niger {Gnizotia Abyssinicci), are cultivated. 
The ground-nut, earth-nut, or pea-nut {Arachis hypogcea), 
derives its name from the fact that the young pod forces 
its way beneath the surface of the earth, where it ripens. 
It is extensively cultivated in South Arcot, and exported 
thence to Europe. It is noted by Sir George Watt that 
there is little doubt that large quantities of ground-nut oil 
are passed off as olive-oil, the chief centre of which industry 
is at Marseilles. Gingelly oil, obtained from the seeds of 
Sesamum indicuui, is largely used for culinary purposes, as 
an illuminant, and in Hindu ceremonial. 

Various species of Citrus yield the lime, which is 
presented to Europeans by Indian retainers and others on 
New Year's day, the orange, and the pomelo, shaddock, or 
grape-fruit, which is more appreciated in the West Indies 

Fig. 69. Ground-nut. 


than in India. The plantain {Musa sapientiim), or banana 
of the West Indies and the Enghsh market, of which each 
plant bears a large bunch of fruits, is sometimes cultivated 
in large gardens extending over many acres. In connection 
with the specific name, it is interesting to note that the 
plantain was formerly confused with the jack fruit, which 
was described by Pliny as the fruit " quo sapientiores 
Indorum vivunt,'" i.e., the fruit on which the more learned 
of the Indians (Brahmans) live. The jack tree {Artocarpus 
integrifolid)^ which grows wild in the hills, and is extensively 
cultivated, receives its name from the Malayalam chakka. 
In young trees the fruits, which are sometimes 18 inches or 
more in length, grow on the branches, and in older trees on 
the trunk. The cashew-nut tree {Anacardiinn occidentale) 
yields the kidney-shaped nuts, which grow on a pear- 
shaped fleshy receptacle, and are usually eaten roasted. 
The fruit of the mango tree i^Mangifera indica : man-kai 
or man-gai), when of good quality, and free from the odour 
of turpentine, is undoubtedly the best fruit in India. The 
Naulakh Bagh, or nine lakh garden of mango and other 
trees, near Ranipet in the North Arcot district, was planted 
by one of the Nawabs of the Carnatic. The custard-apple 
(Ano/ia squamosa), known as sharlfa (noble) and Sitaphal 
or fruit of Sita, is cultivated for its luscious fruit. It is very 
common in a wild state near old forts in the Deccan, e g. 
at Gooty, Gurramkonda, and Penukonda. The papaya or 
papaw tree {Carica Papaya), which derives its name from 
the Carib ababai, is extensively grown in gardens. The 
fruit is eaten, and the digestive properties of its milky juice 
are utilised for the purpose of rendering meat tender by 
rubbing it therewith. It has even been said that tough 
meat is rendered tender by merely hanging it, when freshly 
killed, amongst the foliage of the tree. The best melons 
{Cncuinis Melo) are grown in the Cuddapah district, chiefl}' 
at Sidhout and Cuddapah. Vine ( Vitis vinifera) or grape 


cultivation, from cuttings imported from Australia, has been 
carried out in recent years in the Mysore State. 



Irrigation has been defined as an artificial appli- 
cation of water to the land in order to promote cultivation. 
Where, as on the west coast, there is an abundant rainfall, 
there is no need for irrigation except of a simple kind. 
East of the western ghats, however, irrigation is extensively 
carried out by means of dams thrown across rivers, tanks, 
wells, etc. Of 671 square miles of land, which were irri- 
gated in the Coimbatore district in 1903-4, 502 square miles 
were watered by wells, 119 square miles by Government 
canals, and 35 square miles by tanks. In that district, 
there are said to be 100,000 wells, sunk, in many cases, 
through hard rock, to a depth of 80 to 90 feet. The name 
" tank " is applied to artificial ponds or lakes, made either 
by excavating or banking, which sometimes breach during 
the wet season, and dry up altogether in the hot weather. 
The number of tanks in the Madras Presidency and Mysore 
is said to be about 75,000. Some tanks are of immense 
size, and resemble great natural lakes. For example, the 
Viranam tank, which is a very ancient work, has an area 
of 35 square miles, and an embankment 12 miles long. 
The great tank at Cumbum in the Kurnool district, which 
is by tradition attributed to the sage Jamadagni, was 
formed by damming a gorge through which the Gundla- 
kamma river flows. It has a capacity of 3,696 million 
cubic feet, and a drainage area of 430 square miles. The 
Chembrambakam tank in the Chingleput district, which 


is fed by the Cooum river, has an embankment more than 
3 miles long, and irrigates more than 12,000 acres of wet- 
weather crops. Madras receives its supply of water from 
the Red Hills tank, situated about eight miles distant from 
the city. The Telugu Oddes, or Wudders, who are the 
navvies of the country, have practically a monopoly of the 
work of sinking wells, digging tanks, and constructing 
tank bunds (embankments), and other kinds of earthwork. 
The caste insignia of the Oddes, as given in the Kanchi 
(Conjeeveram) records, 1807, is a spade. Among other 
insignia recorded there, are a Cupid for the Deva-dasis 
(dancing-girls), and a curry-comb for Christians. 

The methods resorted to by cultivators for lifting water 
are primitive and simple. One of the best known methods 
is by means of a picota or picottah, which consists of a 
long lever or yard, pivoted on an upright post, weighted 
on the short arm, and bearing a bucket suspended by a 
bamboo from the long arm. The picota has also been 
described as the trunk of a tree, resting near the middle 
of the fork of another tree, like a see-sav\% on which men 
run up and down to raise a large bucket of water. Picota 
is a Portuguese word, and is also applied to the lever of a 
ship's pump, and post in which it works. The ship's picota 
was also used as a pillory. Thus it is recorded by Caspar 
Correa that Vasco da Gama gave orders that no seaman 
should wear a cloak, except on Sunday ; and if he did so, 
he was to be put in the picota for a day. 

The Persian wheel for lifting water consists of a large 
wheel, which is turned by bullocks walking round in a 
circle, and revolves in water by means of cogged gearing. 
The wheel carries a number of buckets or pots, and, as it 
revolves, the water contained therein is lifted, discharged 
into a trough, and conveyed thence by channels. In the 
Deccan, and elsewhere, water is often lifted by means of a 
mot or large leather bag, which is hauled up with a rope 



and pulley b}- a pair of bullocks walking down an earthen 
ramp or slope. In some places, water is baled out by 
means of hand scoops, or by a basket swung on ropes by 
two men. 

Fig. 70. Lifting- water by means of a picota. 

The Madras Government has quite recently started a 
Pumping and Boring Department in connection with the 
Department of Industries. In the annual report thereof, 


1909-10, it is recorded that "the utilisation for cultivation 
of such underground supplies of water as may be revealed 
by boring depends to a large extent on the cost of raising 
the water to the surface. The oil-engines and pumps now 
being installed in the Pumping Department at present 
represent the most economical form of water-lift ; but, 
even so, they involve considerable initial and recurring 
expenditure, and are frequently beyond the means of ryots 
(cultivators). If a cheaper source of power than that 
represented by the oil-engine could be introduced, the 
practice of lift irrigation could be enormously stimulated. 
The water of the Periyar, if harnessed for power, repre- 
sents such a source." There are said to be fully 60,000 
acres dependent on pumps, the popularity of which is 
steadily increasing. 

Of the major irrigation works undertaken by the 
Madras Government, priority of place must be given to 
what is known as the Periyar Project. Briefly, the object 
of this great undertaking was to divert the waters of the 
Periyar river, which flowed through Travancore, where the 
rainfall is heavy, into the Arabian Sea, across the western 
ghats, to the more arid eastern side of the peninsula, and 
so into the Bay of Bengal. The work, which was carried 
out in a malarious jungle, included the construction of a 
solid masonry dam 176 feet high, to close the valley of 
the Periyar, and form a vast lake or reservoir, which has 
an area of 8,000 acres, for the storage of water. A tunnel, 
5,704 feet long, drilled and blasted through hard rock, 
with sluices and subsidiary works, conducts the water from 
the reservoir down the valley of the Suruli, by which it 
reaches the Vaigai river, which runs past the town of 
Madura. The bed of this river is utilised to carry water 
to places where it is wanted, and canals have been con- 
structed for the distribution of water for the irrigation of 
over 100,000 acres of land in the Vaigai valley. It has 



been picturesquely said that " we are adding an Egypt a 
year to the (Indian) Empire by our canals, but England 
takes no notice." 

Fig. 71. Periyar dam during construction. 

Another good example of combined storage and canal 
systems is afforded by the works in connection with the 
Palar riv^er. By means of an anicut (Tamil, anai-kattu) 
or dam, four miles below the town of Arcot, the water is 


diverted, through a series of main and branch canals, to a 
number of tanks, in which it is stored for the purpose of 
irrigation. The anient was originally designed to improve 
the supply of water to old channels fed by a series of old 
native tanks. 

The Rushikulya river in Ganjam has been utilised for 
irrigation by means of a series of works, known as the 
Rushikulya Project. They consist of two canals from the 
Rushikulya and its tributary the Mahanadi, supplemented 
by two reservoirs named after the towns of Russellkonda 
and Surada. Of these, the former was formed by dam- 
ming a valley in the basin of the Mahanadi, while the 
latter was constructed across the Pathama river, which is 
an affluent of the Rushikulya. The cultivable area thus 
placed under irrigation has been estimated at 142,000 acres. 
The project has been classed among the protective works, 
i.e. protective against famine, in contradistinction to pro- 
ductive works, the revenue derived from which not only 
pays the cost of maintenance, but also a percentage on the 
capital expended on them. 

The best examples of deltaic canals are those at the 
deltas near the mouths of the Godavari, Kistna, and 
Cauvery rivers, where the soil is a rich alluvium produced 
by silt washed down thereby. The head-works of the 
Godavari system are situated at Dowlaishwaram, where 
the river bifurcates into two main streams, the Gautami 
and Vasishta, which are named after two Rishis. The 
works consist mainly of a masonry dam across the river, 
above the bifurcations, in four sections connected by 
islands, which are altogether about 2}j miles in length. 
From the dam nearly 500 miles of navigable main canals, 
and 2,000 miles of smaller distributary canals, com- 
manding over 1,250,000 acres of irrigable land, take 
off The Gunnavaram aqueduct extends the irrigation 
system of the river called the Vainateyam Godavari to the 



Nagaram island, which is said to be one of the most fertile 
parts of the Godavari district. 

The Kistna irrigation system has been carried out by 
damming- the river at Bezwada, and constructing canals, 
which communicate on the north with the Godavari canals, 
and on the south with the Buckingham canal. 

In connection with the Cauvery river, the grand anient 
was constructed by one of the Chola kings below the 
island of Srirangam, to separate the Cauvery from the 

-. i ^^—^itiifbim ^iia^mimAgmtatttmmttMtrillt 

Fig. 72. Dowlaishwaratn Anicut, 

Coleroon, and direct it towards the Tanjore district. 
During the last century, as the Cauvery was silting up, 
and the irrigation channels were becoming dry, the upper 
anicut, 2,250 feet long, was constructed across the Coleroon 
at the upper end of Srirangam island, and a regulation 
dam, 1,950 feet long, was built across the Cauvery near 
the grand anicut. Subsequently, a similar regulator was 
constructed across the Vennar, a main branch of the 
Cauvery. It has been estimated that, in the Tanjore, 



Trichinopoly, and South Arcot districts, the Cauvery and 
Coleroon water 1,107,000 acres of land. 

In deltaic country, the river branches run on the water- 
sheds, and so command the adjacent country. Hence 

Fig. 73. Kistna Anicut, with river in moderate flood. 

irrigation is easy. In non-deltaic country, the river runs 
in a valley, so, to irrigate a given area, the stream must 
be dammed far above that area. 



The cotton plant {Gossypiiini) is most extensively culti- 
vated in the Ceded Districts, especially the Bellary district, 
in Coimbatore and Tinnevelly. Its cultivation is largely 
carried out on the black loamy soil, called in the vernacular 
regur or regada, and by Europeans black cotton soil, which 
is very soft and adhesive during the monsoon rains, and 
fissured by huge cracks in the dry season. The cotton of 
commerce consists of the unicellular hairs, which are at- 
tached to the seeds of the plant, and, in South India, 
produce the commercial forms known as Tinnevellys, 
Westerns, Cocanadas, and Salems. The separation of the 
fibre or lint from the seed is effected by ginning (gin, a 
contraction of engine). The cotton is brought for sale to 
the factories by the bigger ryots (farmers or cultivators), 
the smaller ones disposing of it, ginned or unginned, to 
native brokers, who have advanced money on the crop. 
It is noted, in the ' Imperial Gazetteer of India,' that 
" originally all the cotton-presses were in Black Town, 
Madras, and the raw cotton was brought to them in carts, 
taking months upon the road. The cotton famine in 
Lancashire, which was caused by the American War 
( 1 86 1 -5), gave a great impetus to the trade, and it was 
shortly afterwards further encouraged by the construction 
of the Madras Railway towards the cotton-growing areas 
in the Deccan. As the line advanced, the cotton was 
carted to the nearest station, and, when it reached the 
Deccan, the presses were transferred thither from Madras. 



Ginning- and cleaning nu'lLs followed, but most of the 
Deccan cotton is still hand-ginned. Much the same course 
was followed in Tinnevelly and Coimbatore." Many gin- 
ning and cleaning mills, and steam-presses are now at 
work in the most important centres of the cotton industry; 
and spinning or weaving mills have been established, 
especially in Madras, Bellary, Madura, Tuticorin, Coim- 
batore, and Bangalore. During a visit to Tuticorin in 

St 1. 

Fig. 74. Weaving on hand-loom. 

1887, I used to watch massive blocks of stony corals 
(yPorites, Astrcea, etc.) being brought in canoes from the 
reef, and thrown into the ground to form the foundation 
of the new cotton mills, which have in consequence been 
named the Coral Mills. At a cotton-press at Adoni, in 
the Bellary district, I have seen many Basavis (women 
dedicated to the deity) working for a daily wage of three 
annas. The Madras Government has, in recent years, 
established a weaving factory at Salem, with the object 
T. 14 


of affording training in improved methods of weaving on 
hand-looms, and advancing the welfare of the weaving 
classes. Fly-shuttle looms are reported to be coming 
steadily into use ; and successful experiments have been 
carried out in adapting the Jacquard harness to country 
looms making bordered cloths. Weaving is taught in 
various mission schools, and the woven fabrics manu- 
factured by the Basel Mission on the west coast have 
earned a widespread reputation. 

The sugar-cane plant {Sacchanivi officinaruin) is widely 
cultivated in South India, and there is a large native 
industry in the manufacture of jaggery (raw sugar), country 
sugar, molasses, and other products of the juice. The 
sugar factory and distillery at Aska in Ganjam was long 
associated with the name of Mr F. J. V. Minchin. At 
Nellikuppam, in the South Arcot district, there is a sugar 
factory belonging to the East India Distilleries and Sugar 
Factories Company, in which large quantities of spirit are 
distilled, and sugar is made from the juice of the canes 
cultivated in the neighbourhood, and palmyra jaggery 
imported from Tinnevelly. The ryats, who bring the 
canes to the factory, are paid according to the weight of 
the jaggery obtained from a sample thereof, which is 
crushed, and the juice boiled down to jaggery in their 
presence. The ryat is said to be sometimes caught, adding 
sand, concealed within his clothes, to the juice as it boils, 
to increase the weight. During the last few years, an 
experimental sugar-cane station, from which canes are 
distributed among the ryats, has been established at 
Samalkot in the Godavari district, under the direction of 
the Government Botanist. From the latest reports, it is 
gathered that, in the Godavari and South Arcot districts, 
the new Mauritius canes which have been introduced are 
rapidly ousting the inferior local canes grown before. The 
new canes are said to give about twice the produce of the 


old, and their harder rind makes them ahnost proof against 
jackals^ — -a source of great loss before. 

Tobacco {Nicotiana Tabaann) is cultivated, on a large 
or small scale, in every district of the Madras Presidency. 
The leaf is manufactured in European factories, employing 
large numbers of Indians, at Dindigul in the Madura dis- 
trict, into the well-known Dindigul, or, as they are often 
called, Trichinopoly or Trichy cheroots. The word cheroot, 
it may be noted, is derived from the Tamil shuruttu, a roll 
(of tobacco). The cheroot manufacture in the Trichinopoly 
district is said to have declined, owing to the competition 
of the milder and better rolled cheroots, which are made 
at Dindigul and Madras. It is pointed out by Sir George 
Watt that the discovery, made about 1881, that, by im- 
porting wrappers from Java and Sumatra, cheroots could 
be turned out, which were better than those made through- 
out of Indian leaf, gave the impetus that was needed to 
bring them to the favourable notice of the world at large. 
Tobacco, called lunka tobacco, grown on the banks of the 
Godavari river, and the lunkas or islands, which are very 
fertile owing to the silt deposited on them, is exported in 
large quantities in the form of leaf to Burma from the port 
of Coconada. According to the Review of Trade in the 
Madras Presidency, 1910-11, the importation of cigarettes 
decreased to the extent of yy per cent, in quantity, owing 
to the enhanced duty on tobacco (Act VIII, 1910). Cheap 
American cigarettes suffered most severely, their place 
being taken by cigarettes of Indian manufacture. Enor- 
mous numbers of cheap cigarettes are now turned out 
in India, especially in Bengal. 

One result of the discovery and introduction of aniline 
and alizarine dyes has been that the cultivation of some 
of the plants used by native dyers in the manufacture of 
vegetable dyes, has been abandoned. The imports of 
aniline and alizarine dyes into India during 1910-11 were 

14 — 2 



valued at ^685,000. The effect of the discovery of syn- 
thetic indigo on the indigo industry has been very marked. 
The indigo trade of the Madras Presidency decreased, in 
1910-11, from Rs 5-45 lakhs to Rs. 3-92 lakhs, or 28 per 
cent, in value, and the area under cultivation was 25 per 
cent, less than in the previous year The leguminous 
plant {Indigofera tiiictoria), which yields the natural blue 
dye. is most widely cultivated in the Cuddapah and South 

Fig. 75. Tobacco crop. 

Arcot districts. The dye, when it has been extracted from 
the plant by either a wet- or dry-leaf process, is finally 
pressed into hard cakes. 

A few years ago, the manufacture from the imported 
metal aluminium, of cooking-pots, water-bottles, and other 
articles for domestic, military, and medical purposes, was 
introduced at the Madras Government School of Arts, 
and successfully launched as a new industry, which has 


since been taken up by the Aluminium Company and 

More recently, the Madras Government established a 
Chrome Tanning Department, with the primary object of 
replacing the country leather by a better leather for kava- 
lais or water-bags used for raising water from wells. The 
industry was extended to the manufacture of boots, shoes, 
and sandals. Among the various articles tanned for private 
individuals were crocodile, tiger, leopard, sambar deer, and 
snake skins. The departmental report, 1908-9, records 
the manufacture of a false ear for a policeman's charger, 
and a leopard skin waistcoat. In 1908-9, a Company, 
called the Mysore Tannery Limited, erected a large chrome 
tannery near Bangalore in the Mysore State. The Madras 
Government Chrome Tanning Factory was sold in 1910 
to the Rewah Durbar (Government), and the machinery 
and plant set up at Umaria. According to the census 
returns, 1901, the number of people (Chakkiliyans or 
chucklers, Madigas, Muhammadans, etc.) engaged in the 
tanning and leather-working trade in the Madras Presi- 
dency, was 190,01 1. Of this number, 1 1 1,865 were returned 
as boot, shoe, and sandal makers ; 50,796 as makers of 
water-bags, well-bags, buckets, and ghl (clarified butter) 
pots ; and 9,294 as engaged in the manufacture of leather 
from hides (cow, buffalo, and calf) and skins (sheep and 
goats). It is said that ghl, if carefully enclosed in skins 
while still hot, may be preserved for many years, without 
the addition of salt or other preservative. 

Beer has been brewed on the Nllgiri hills since 1826, 
and various breweries have since been established there 
from time to time. In the breweries at the present day, 
beer is brewed for the taverns, and for the troops at 
Wellington and other military stations. For the beer 
supplied to the taverns, the barley of the Nllgiris (called 
beer ganji), which is cultivated by the Badagas and Kotas, 


is used; but for " English beer" the grain is imported from 
the Punjab. 

A Government Cordite Factory is established on the 
Nllgiris, in the Aravanghat valley above Coonoor. The 
machinery is driven by electricity generated at the Karteri 
falls. The factory gives employment to many Badagas. 
Cordite is a smokeless explosive, used by the Army and 
Navy. Its name is derived from the fact that it is pro- 
duced in the form of cylindrical strings or cords, looking 
like macaroni, by pressing it, while in a pasty condition, 
through dies or perforations in a steel plate. 



The prosperity of the coffee {Coffea arabica) industry 
in South India was at its height in the decade 1870-80. 
The profits were so good that the cultivation of the plant 
spread all over the suitable areas of the western ghats. 
Before the appearance of leaf disease or blight caused by 
the fungus Heinilcia vastatrix, the heavy rainfall during 
the south-west monsoon did not affect the growth or yield, 
and, in consequence, Travancore, Wynaad, Coorg, and 
Mysore, gave up large tracts of forest land to the enterprise 
of the planter. But the appearance of leaf disease worked 
a complete and rapid change. The disease first appeared 
in Ceylon, and gradually crept along the line of the ghats 
until it invaded every planting district in South India. 
Now it has completely killed coffee out of Travancore, and 
almost entirely out of Wynaad. Districts with heavy rainfall 
have succumbed, and it survives only in comparatively dry 
climates, where the fungus can be successfully combated 


21 C 

by high cultivation. A heavy fall in the price of coffee 
owing to the extension of cultivation in Brazil has also 

Fig. 76. Coffee bushes. 

lowered the price of coffee to a point at which planters in 
India find it hard to make a profit. Consequently, except 
in favoured localities, such as parts of Coorg and Mysore, 


and a few other remnants, the cultivation of coffee has 
given place to tea. 

The coffee fruit, when ripe, is popularly called the 
cherry, owing to its red colour, and the twin seeds or beans 
are known as the berries. In the preparation of the seeds 
for the market, the succulent pulp, parchment, and silver 
skin which surround it, are removed by machinery. Coffee- 
curing works, in which the berries are prepared for export 
and consumption in India, are established at Calicut, Telli- 
cherry, Mangalore, Coimbatore, and other places. 

The tea plant {Cajne//ia Thea) has been grown, especially 
on the Nllgiri hills, for a great number of years, but its 
cultivation on a large scale is of quite recent growth. When 
Heniilein destroyed the coffee industry of Ceylon, planters 
turned their attention to other products, especially to 
cinchona and tea. The planters of South India were not 
slow to follow the example. The coffee districts of South 
Travancore and Firmed were the first to be planted up on 
a large scale. It was soon found that these areas could 
produce a tea which, though not of first class quality, could 
command a ready sale at profitable prices. Tea will grow 
at any elevation, but, in general terms, it may be said that, 
the higher the elevation, the better is the qualit}^ of the tea 
produced, but the smaller is the yield. Tea grown near 
sea-level gives an abundant yield of very low qualit\-. The 
leaves, which are hand-plucked by coolies, are manufactured 
into various classes of tea, e.g. black and green tea, which 
receive market names, such as Orange Pekoe, Pekoe, etc. 

The days of profitable cultivation of cinchona were 
short, owing to the rapid and scientific development of the 
industry by the Dutch Government in Java. Cinchona 
plantations are now maintained by the Madras Govern- 
ment on the Nllgiri hills, at Naduvatam, on the slopes of 
Dodabetta, and the Hooker estate (named after the dis- 
tinguished botanist), to meet the demand for sulphate of 





quinine and cinchona febrifuge in the Madras Presidency, 
and other Provinces and States. The factory at Nadu- 
vatam is on the site of the old Nllgiri jail, in which 
Chinese convicts from the Straits Settlements were formerly 
confined. On the expiration of the sentence, they settled 
between Naduvatam and Gudalur, and, contracting alliances 
with Indian women, now form, with their Indo-Chinese 
offspring, a small colony of market-gardeners, gaining a 
modest livelihood by cultivating vegetables and coffee. 
Of the various species of cinchona, C. officinalis (loxa or 
crown bark) is said to have proved the most useful, and 
hybrids between this species and C. siiccirubra (red bark), 
and C. Calisaya, var. Lcdgcriana (" Ledger "), are also 
cultivated. Quinine powders are sold, in cheap packets, 
by postmasters throughout South India. 

Experimental cultivation of rubber-producing trees 
{Hevea, Manihot, Castilloa, Landolphia, etc.) has long been 
carried out on the Nllgiris, in Malabar, and Mysore. The 
systematic cultivation thereof in the planting districts has 
extended rapidly during the last few years, owing to the 
increasing demand for rubber in the English market, and 
is now carried out in Travancore, Cochin, Malabar, Mysore 
and Coorg, and on the Nllgiri and Shevaroy hills. It has 
been said that the varying elevations of the land in South 
India are adapted for the growth both of para {Hevea 
brasiliensis) and ceara {Manihot Glaziovii), the former 
loving the hot moist climate of the lowlands, and the 
latter thriving best at high elevations where the rainfall is 
slight. The rubber is obtained by cutting or scoring the 
bark, so as to produce a flow of the inspissated milky fluid 
called the latex, which coagulates on exposure to the air. 



In the British trade, fish are classified as prime and 
offal, the former being consumed by the richer, and the 
latter by the poorer classes. In India the fish supply is 
essentially a poor man's question, and the prosperity of 
the industry depends largely on the offal, and not on the 
prime. At Cochin, out of forty different kinds of fish classed 
as edible by the natives, only four^ — seir, whiting, mullet, 
and "sardines" — were regarded as of the prime quality. 
The economic fishes comprise : (a) round fishes, e.g. seir, 
pomfret, mackerel, and herring; (d) flat fishes (the so-called 
soles) ; (c) cartilaginous fishes (sharks and rays or skates). 
Sharks and skates are known as pal sora or milk producers, 
and, when salted, are considered very good for women 
nursing infants. Sharks' fins are sold in the local markets 
for food, or exported to China. At Cannanore, one fish 
daily from each boat, and half the sharks' fins, used to be 
claimed as a perquisite for the Raja's cat, or poocha min 
(cat-fish) collection. In his speech on the budget some 
years ago, the Finance Minister stated that he had to come 
down from the regions of high finance to grovel among 
sharks' fins and fish maws, but these articles would bring 
in sufficient income to pay the salary of a High Court 
Judge for half a year. Fish-maws are the sounds or air- 
bladders of fishes, such as the cat-fish {Anns), which are 
shipped to China and Europe for the manufacture of isin- 
glass. In former times, hundreds of tons of fish oil, 
obtained by boiling "sardines" {Clupea loiigiceps), which in 


some years arrive in huge shoals off the west coast, are 
said to have been exported from Cochin. The oil trade is, 
however, reported to have decreased in recent years. The 
Natives believe that the oil which is exported to Europe 
returns in the guise of cod-liver oil. The "sardines," which 
are called nalla mathi (good fish), are highly appreciated 
as an article of food, and are of importance to planters, 
whose agents have them sun-dried for the purpose of 

The importance of the fisheries of the west as compared 
with those of the east coast is brought out by the following 
statistics of a single year, which show that, with half the 
number of yards, the outturn of fish on the west coast 
exceeded that of the east coast by 533,533 maunds. 

Eight east Calicut (west 

coast sub- 

coast) sub- 











Number of yards ... 

Weight of fish luought in for operation, maunds 

Value of salt sold, Rs 

Weight of salt sold, maunds 

The fish-curing operations, which are carried on in 
yards near the sea-shore, are controlled by the Salt De- 
partment, which supplies salt to the fish-curers. The sea 
fisheries of the west coast are conducted mainly by Muk- 
kuvans, Mogers, and Mappillas (Muhammadans) from small 
rowing and sailing boats, within a (e\v miles of the shore. 
But fishermen come, during the fishing season, to Malpe in 
South Canara, from Ratnagiri in the Bombay Presidency, 
with a flotilla of larger keeled and outrigged sailing boats. 
The Pattanavan fishermen of Madras go out fishing on 
catamarans (kattu, binding; maram, tree), which have been 
described by Lady Dufferin as "two logs of wood lashed 
together (with ropes). The rower wears a fool's cap, in 
which he carries betel and tobacco, and, when he encounters 













a big wave, he leaves his boat, shps through the wave him- 
self, and picks up his catamaran on the other side of it. 
Some large deep barges (masula boats) came out for us, 
with a guard of honour of the mosquito fleet, as the cata- 
marans are called." Catamarans have further been described 
as getting through the fiercest surf, sometimes dancing at 
their ease on the top of the waters ; sometimes the man 
completely washed off, and man floating one way and 
catamaran another, till they seem to catch each other again 
by magic. In one of the early Indian voyagers' log-books 
there is an entry concerning a catamaran to the effect that 
" this morning, 6 a.m. we saw distinctly two black devils 
playing at single-stick. We watched these infernal imps 
about an hour, when they were lost in the distance. Surely 
this doth portend some great tempest." 

The pearl fisheries, which are conducted from Tuticorin 
in the Gulf of Manaar at irregular intervals, have been 
celebrated from a remote period, and, in comparatively 
recent times, have been carried out successively by the 
Portuguese, Dutch, and English. The mollusc {Avicula 
fncata), popularly known as the pearl oyster, which is the 
source of the pearls, growls in dense masses on the sea- 
bottom, some miles from the coast, and anchors itself by 
means of its silky byssus filaments to another shell, coral- 
rock, or other object. The pearls of commerce are for the 
most part those which are formed within the soft tissues of 
the animal, and not the irregular pearly excrescences (odu- 
muttu), which are found as outgrowths of the nacreous or 
mother-of-pearl layer of the shell. The pearls are formed 
by the deposition of carbonate of lime in concentric layers 
like the successive scales of an onion, round some irritating 
foreign body, such as a parasitic worm, grain of sand, or 
the frustule of a diatom. The shells are collected by 
Tamil and Arab divers, who wear no diving dress, but are 
let down from boats on a stone to which a rope is attached. 


On arrival at the bottom, they collect as many shells as 
they can in a basket or net, and come to the surface to 
regain their breath. At the fishery in 1890, a scare was 
produced by a diver being bitten by a shark, and a " wise 
woman " was engaged to officiate as shark-charmer. The 
shells, with the exception of the divers' share, are sold at the 
end of each day by a government auctioneer, and piled up 
in a shed (kottu), where they are left for some days, so that 
the animal matter undergoes decomposition. The pearls 
are finally extracted by means of sieves of graduated sizes 
from the putrid residue, which is submitted to repeated 
washings, to free it from the prevailing maggots, sand, etc. 
The Jati Talaivan, or head of the Parava fishing caste, 
which originally held the fishing rights, is entitled to 
a fixed share of the shells as his j:)erquisite. 

The chank (sankha) or conch fishery is also conducted 
from Tuticorin, and is a more regular source of income 
than the pearl fisheries. The shells are found in the 
neighbourhood of the pearl banks, buried in the sand, 
lying on the sea-bottom, or in sandy crevices between 
blocks of coral-rock. They lie scattered about, and not 
aggregated together like the pearl oysters, so that the 
divers have to move about from place to place on the 
bottom in search of them. The shells are stored in a 
godovvn or store-room, where the animal matter is got rid 
of by the process of putrefaction, and periodically sold by 
auction to the highest bidder. The chank is a sacred shell, 
and is used as a musical instrument in Hindu temples. It 
is also cut into armlets, bracelets, and other ornaments. 
It appears on the coins of the Chalukyan and Pandyan 
kingdoms, and on the modern coinage of Travancore. The 
rare right-handed chank (i.e., one which has its spiral opening 
to the right) is said to have been sometimes priced at a 
lakh of rupees (Rs 100,000), and to have sold for its weight 
in gold. 



One of the edible holothurians (sea-cucumbers), known 
as the trepang or beche-de-mer, is very abundant in the 
mud on the south shore at Pamban, and in the vicinity of 
Ramesvaram, and is prepared for exportation to Penang 
and Singapore. The process of preparation is as follows. 
The animals are collected as thev lie on the mud at low 
water, and placed in a cauldron, which is heated by a 

Fig-. 79. Chank shell. 

charcoal fire. As the temperature rises in the cauldron, 
the living animals commit suicide by ejecting their diges- 
tive apparatus and other organs, and become reduced to 
leathery sacs. At the end of twenty minutes or half-an- 
hour, the boiling process is stopped, and the shrivelled 
animals are buried in the sand until the followingf 
morning, when the boiling is repeated. Beches-de-mer are 


highly esteemed as an article of food by Chinese and 
Japanese epicures, being made into a thick gelatinous 

During the last few years, a Fishery Department has 
been organised, under the direction of Sir F. A. Nicholson, 
K.C.I.E. The work in connection therewith includes 
improved methods of curing fish, the manufacture of fish- 
oil and guano, freshwater pisciculture and conservancy, the 
stocking of big tanks with fish, the culture of edible oysters, 
the care of pearl and chank fisheries, and cooperation. 



Of the indigenous arts of South India, the only one 
which now employs any considerable number of persons is 
the weaving on hand-looms of silk and cotton fabrics, and 
even this is in a declining state. Little more than a 
century ago (1796-7), the value of the cotton fabrics ex- 
ported from India to England was iJ" 2, 7 7 7,000, or one-third 
of the total of all Indian exports. When, as at the present 
day, the bazars of South India are flooded with imported 
piece-goods of British manufacture, it is curious to look back 
and reflect that the term piece-goods was originally applied 
in trade to the cotton fabrics exported from India. In 
1700, a law was passed, mainly with a view to the protection 
of the Spitalfields weavers, by which all wrought silks, 
mixed stuffs, and figured calicoes, the manufacture of 
Persia, China, or the East Indies, were forbidden to be 
worn or otherwise used in Great Britain. The exports at 
the present day include bright coloured Madras and 
Ventupallam " handkerchiefs " for Indian emigrants to 

T. 15 















distant countries. . Madras handkerchiefs are repeatedly 
referred to in Uncle Tom's Cabin ; and, in Tom Cringle's 
Log, President Petion, the black Washington, is described 
as wearing the everlasting Madras handkerchief round 
his brows. It is said that the Indian purchasers of the 
printed and dyed fabrics which find a market in Africa 
set as much store by the odour of the cloth, which Man- 
chester cannot imitate, as by the pattern and colour. 

An industry for which South India was till quite 
recently celebrated was the manufacture of block-printed 
and hand-painted palempores, and other cotton fabrics. 
Nowadays, at former centres of this industry, e.g., Masuli- 
patam and Walajapet, old wood-blocks, many with beautiful 
patterns of Persian origin, may be seen piled up in corners or 
in the roof, and covered with the dust and cobwebs of years. 
The printed cottons of Masulipatam consisted of canopies, 
screen-cloths, prayer-cloths, etc. At Kalahasti, painted 
cloths are made, on which are depicted crude illustrations 
of scenes from the Hindu epics, the Mahabharata and 
Ramayana, with the story in Telugu characters ; and at 
Cocanada fabrics with the tree of life pattern are also made. 

European manufacturers have not yet produced any- 
thing which can compete with the fine cotton and silk 
cloths for female attire made at Madura, Tanjore, Kuttalam, 
Kornad, Kampli, Adoni, and other places ; and the satins 
made at A}'}'ampet, Ariyalur, Arcot, and Walajapet, are of 
considerable beauty. The fine lace-like patterns on the 
fabrics of Karuppur, Paramagudi, Manamadurai, etc., which 
are drawn by skilled hands with an iron pen fed with 
melted wax, are exceedingly beautiful. The muslins 
manufactured at Chicacole and Arni, the delicacy of which 
has been compared with a spider's web, have been justly 
celebrated. Rugs made of silk floss are manufactured at 
Ayyampet, and good carpets are made at Ellore, and the 
Vellore and Bangalore jails. 




The manufacture of fine ornamental brass and bronze 
work, in the shape of many-branched lamps, images of 

Fig. 8i. Metal Image of Siva as Nataraja. 

gods, etc., for which South India was once famous, has 
become almost a lost art. The Madras Museum possesses 
a magnificent collection of arms from the Tanjore palace 



armoury, which show to what a high state of perfection the 
ironsmiths had brought their art in the days when skilled 
artisans were specially employed by Indian Princes at their 

Fig. 82. Elephant goads from the Tanjore palace. 

palaces. The collection includes three magnificent damas- 
cened elephant goads (ancus) of chiselled steel, and several 
Genoa blades attached to hilts of Indian workmanship. It 


is a matter of history that the Maratha Raja Sivaji's favourite 
sword Bhavani was a Genoa blade. Tanjore is now the 
chief centre for metal-work, consisting of combinations of 
copper and silver, brass and copper, and graven brass. 
The crusting of copper with silver figures is a modern 
adaptation of an older art, and the demand for these wares 
is almost entirely European. Madras has a reputation 
for its silver-ware, adapted to European requirements, 
with figures of Hindu deities (swamis) crowded together. 
Brass trays and plates, into which thin plates of copper are 
let in or damascened, with crude representations of gods, 
are made at Tirupati. There is also a considerable trade 
in small brass and copper deities of local manufacture, 
which are sold to pilgrims to the sacred shrine. At Vellore 
exists an industry in pierced brass trays with mythological 
figures. An interesting type of brass-work is carried on at 
Belugunta and other places in Ganjam, in the form of 
grotesque animals and human figurines, cast by the cire 
perdue process, which are said to be used as wedding 
presents by the Kutiya Kondh hill tribe. Pliable brass 
fishes are made at Russellkonda. At Sivaganga and 
Madura, brass models of lizards, cobras, frogs, and other 
animals are made. At Kurumbalur, in the Trichinopoly 
district, there is a small industry in the manufacture of 
brass trays and vessels inlaid with zinc. 

The Gudigars of Mysore are highly skilled carvers in 
sandalwood, and were employed during the building of 
the Maharaja's new palace at Mysore. The designs of the 
cabinets, caskets, etc., which they turn out, are very elaborate 
and intricate, and frequently consist of delicate scroll-work 
interspersed with figures from the Hindu Pantheon. The 
finer portions of the work are sometimes done with tools 
made from European umbrella-spokes. At the Cannanore 
jail, double coconuts (coco-de-mer) are richly carved, for 
use as liquor-cases, with Burmese figures. Coconuts, for 


use as sugar-basins, teapots, etc. are also carved with repre- 
sentations of peacocks, Burmese figures, and Hindu deities. 
The industry was originally started by Burmese convicts 
confined in the jail after the Burmese war of 1885, but has 
since been taken up by Mappillas, Tiyans, and others in 
forced retirement. In Travancore very spirited and well 
executed designs are carved on coconut shells, and at 
Karkal in South Canara young coconuts are, in like 
manner, neatly carved with floral, conventional, and mytho- 
logical designs. 

In Travancore, ivory-carvers used to be regularly em- 
ployed by the Maharajas, and some fine specimens of their 
work, in the shape of tankards with representations of the 
tulabharam (weighing against gold), and other ceremonies, 
are preserved in the palace at Trivandrum. The throne 
sent to the London Exhibition of 185 1 as a gift to Queen 
Victoria is a notable production from this locality. In 
recent times, ivory-carving has been developed at the Tri- 
vandrum School of Arts. Western influence has greatly 
affected the design and character of the articles turned out, 
which include hand-mirrors, combs, paper-knives, deer, 
hunting scenes, and the lion of Lucerne. At Vizagapatam 
several firms make fancy boxes, card-cases, picture-frames, 
etc. of sandalwood, rosewood or ebony, inlaid or overlaid 
with ivory fretwork. Representations of Hindu deities, and 
floral designs, are incised in the ivory, and filled in with 
black lacquer (sgraffito). At Vizagapatam are also made 
various articles, e.g. animals, boxes and book-slides, in 
"bison" horn obtained from the hill-tracts, tortoise-shell, 
and porcupine quills. 

The "lacquer" ware of Kurnool has been said to be 
perhaps the finest gesso work, or ornament modelled in 
plaster and glue in low relief, which is produced in India. 
It consists mainly of boxes, trays and tables. The work 
turned out at Mandasa in Ganjam is much bolder, and is 




suitable for decoration on a large scale. A similar method 
of decoration was formerly much used in Saracenic archi- 
tectural decoration of interiors in many countries. At 
Nosam, leather dish-mats are painted with pictures of 
deities and floral designs. Native playing-cards and fans 
made of palm leaves, lacquered and painted, are also made 

Fig. 83. Portion of a lacquered table, Nandyal, Kurnool. 

At Trichinopoly, models of the great temples, artificial 
flowers, and bullock coaches, are made of the pith of the 
sola plant {A^schyjiomene asperd). The pith is further em- 
ployed in the manufacture of sola (not solar) topis or sun- 
hats, and in the construction of the decorated tazias or 
tabuts, representing the tombs of the martyrs Hasan and 
Husain, at the Muhammadan Mohurrum festival. 

Of the mats of South India, those made at Tinnevelly 







and Palghat in Malabar are the best known. They are 
woven with the split stalks of a sedge. It is said that a 
good mat will hold water for twenty-four hours, and that 
a Tinnevelly mat long enough for a man to lie upon can 
be rolled up and packed into the interior of a moderate- 
sized walking-stick. The reed mats of Parlakimedi, 
Shiyali, and Wandiwash may also be noted. 

The Victoria Memorial Hall, Madras, has, under the 
auspices of the Victoria Technical Institute, been set apart 
as a permanent place of exhibition and sale for selected 
samples of the artistic handicrafts of the Presidency, with 
a view to fostering the art industries and improving the 
prospects of the artisans. 



Many of the early travellers and pioneers, from the 
thirteenth century onwards, have left in their published 
writings relating to Malabar and other parts of South India 
material of very great value. The book of Ser Marco 
Polo the Venetian, written in the thirteenth century, is 
said to have been one of the influences which inspired the 
navigator Columbus. Ibn Batuta, the Arab traveller, who 
visited South India in the fourteenth century, wrote an 
account of his wanderings in Arabic. To the sixteenth 
century belong Ludovico di Varthema ; Gaspar Correa ; 
Duarte Barbosa, a relation of Magellan, whom he accom- 
panied on his voyage for the circumnavigation of the globe ; 
Fernao Lopez de Castanheda ; Ralph Fitch ; Caesar de 
Federici, merchant of Venice; van Linschoten, who came 
to the east in the train of the Archbishop of Goa ; and the 


Portuguese poet Luiz de Camoens, who was the author 
of Os Lusiadas (the Lusiad). To the seventeenth century 
belong Philippus Baldaeus, a Dutch chaplain; John Fryer, 
F.R.S.; and Jean Baptiste Tavernier, who travelled as 
a jeweller. The eighteenth century produced Francois 
Valentijn, an army chaplain in the Dutch service ; Alex- 
ander Hamilton; J. Canter Visscher, chaplain at Cochin; 
Edward Ives, a surgeon in the navy; Mr Grose, a writer in 
the East India Company's service; J. Splinter Stavorinus, 
Rear-Admiral in the service of the States General ; P. 
Sonnerat, the French naturalist, after whom the grey 
jungle-fowl is named Ga/lus sonnerati ; Frao Paolino di 
San Bartholomeo, who published a Sanskrit grammar in 
Tamil characters ; Joao de Barros ; and Robert Orme. 
Orme, who was at one time a Member of Council in 
Madras, and afterwards Historiographer to the East India 
Company, was born at Anjengo. So, too, was Elizabeth 
Draper (" Sterne's Eliza"), the wife of Daniel Draper of the 
East India Company's service, who came to England, and 
became acquainted with Laurence Sterne. The cyclone at 
Masulipatam in 1864 washed away a tree which was known 
as Eliza's tree. To the nineteenth century belong Francis 
Buchanan (afterwards Buchanan- Hamilton), author of A 
Jounuy througJi the Countries of Mysore, Canara, and 
Malabar ; Mark Wilks, the historian of Mysore, who was 
Resident in Mysore (1803-8); and George Bruce Malleson, 
the author of various books relating to Indian history, who 
was guardian of the young Maharaja of Mysore (1869-77). 
In the chapter devoted to History, reference has been 
madetomanyof those who made history during the troublous 
times commencing with the arrival of the Portuguese off 
the Malabar coast, and lasting till the end of the eighteenth 
century. Conspicuous among these are Vasco da Gama, 
Albuquerque, Zu-1-Fikar Khan, Chanda Sahib, Mahe 
de la Bourdonnais, Robert Clive, Dupleix, Stringer 



Lawrence, Nawab Walajah, Bussy, Lally, Warren 
Hastings, Eyre Coote, Haidar Ali, Tipu Sultan, Arthur 
Wellesley (the first Duke of Wellington), the Marquis 













-'-. \ 



": g 

i. .^H 



■■mmk. ■ 





'^ * " 





Fig. 85. Lord Clive. 

Cornwallis, and General Harris, afterwards Lord Harris 
of Seringapatam and Mysore. Sir Frederick (afterwards 
Earl) Roberts was Commander-in-Chief of Madras, 1881-85. 


General (afterwards Sir) Harry Prendergast was in com- 
mand of the Burma expedition, 1885-6, which resulted 
in the deposition of King Theebaw, and the annexation 
of the country. 

Mohammed Yusuf, Governor of the Madura country, 
who eventuall}' rebelled against the Nawab of Arcot, and 
was captured by the Nawab and the English, and hanged 
as a rebel in 1764, is referred to in Malcolm's Life of 
Robert Lord Clivc, as the bravest of all the native soldiers 
that ever served the English in India. 

Umdat-ul-Umara, Nawab of the Carnatic (1795 — 1801), 
who built the "Thousand Lights" in Mount Road, Madras, 
was initiated as a Freemason in the Trichinopoly Lodge 
about 1775. 

The long line of Agents, Presidents, and Governors of 
Madras commencing with Francis Day, in whose time the 
building of Fort St George was begun (1640), contains 
many names distinguished in Indian history. In some 
cases, the appointment of Governor was combined with 
that of Commander-in-Chief Thus, Sir Archibald Camp- 
bell, who was wounded at the taking of Quebec by Wolfe 
in 1758, fulfilled the dual 7'ole. So, too, did Major-General 
William Medows, who took the field against Tipu Sultan 
in 1790. In the following year, the Governor-General, the 
Marquis Cornwallis, who capitulated at York town in 
America in i78i,took the command against Tlpu. George 
Foxcroft, Agent and Governor, was arrested and imprisoned 
by Sir Edward Winter in 1665, but reinstated three years 
later. The Yale University in America was named after 
Elihu Yale (1687-92), in gratitude for a present of books, 
pictures, and other effects, the sale of which realised ^560, 
to the struggling school at Connecticut. Lord Pigot was 
kidnapped by his Councillors in 1776, and kept in confine- 
ment at St Thomas' Mount, whence he was removed to the 
Governor's Garden House, where he died. Sir Thomas 


Rumbold (1778-80), after his retirement, was held respons- 
ible for Haidar All's invasion of the Carnatic, and dis- 
missed from the service by the Court of Directors, but 
subsequently acquitted. Hobart Town in Tasmania derives 
its name from Lord Hobart, who became Secretary of 
State for the Colonial and War Departments subsequent 
to his Governorship of Madras (1794-8). Sir Thomas 
Munro, who, during his administration of the Ceded 
Districts, did much to develop the ryotwari system of land 
tenure, died of cholera at Pattikonda in Kurnool when 
Governor of Madras (1827). 

Tiruvallavar (the divine soothsayer), who was the 
author of the poetical work entitled the Kural, is said to 
have been the son of a Tamil Pariah woman by a Brahman 
father, and to have been brought up by a Valluvan priest 
of the Pariahs at Mylapore, now a suburb of Madras. 
Though a Pariah, he was deemed worthy of election to 
the Academy of Madura — an honour usually reserved 
exclusively for Brahmans of learning. At times of census, 
the Valluvans return Tiruvalluvan as one of their sub- 

The Hindu religion has been influenced by various 
reformers, among whom Sankara Acharya, Ramanuja, 
Vallabhacharya, and Chaitanya stand out conspicuously. 
The reputed birthplace of Sankara Acharya, a Malabar 
Brahman who lived about the ninth century, is still shown 
on the bank of the Alwaye river in Travancore. Sankara 
developed the theory of pantheistic monism or Advaita, 
and went to Badrinath in the Central Himalayas, where, 
at the present day, a Nambutiri (west coast) Brahman 
officiates as priest at the shrine of Vishnu. Ramanuja, 
who lived in the twelfth century, and is stated to have 
been educated at Conjeeveram, was the founder of the 
Vaishnava sect of Hindus. He lived at Trichinopoly, 
and is said to have introduced the worship of Vishnu at 


Tirupati, and to have founded 700 maths or monasteries. 
Madhva Acharya, who was born at the close of the twelfth 
century, was the founder of the Dvaita philosophy, and 
established temples at Udipi in South Canara, and other 
places. In the fifteenth century, Vallabhacharya, a Telugu 
Brahman, was the originator of the worship of Bala Gopala 
or the youthful Krishna. About the same time, Chaitanya, 
who was born at Nadia in Bengal, extended the worship 
of Jagannath at Puri, and his influence has had a lasting 
effect on the religion of the inhabitants of the Oriya 

Of European divines, the most celebrated is Francis 
Xavier (1506-52), whose remains are buried at Goa. On 
the occasion of his visit to the south-east coast, he com- 
mitted to memory Tamil translations of the Creed, Lord's 
Prayer, Ave Maria, and Decalogue, and baptised many 
thousands of converts, among whom large numbers of 
Paravas were included. The converts were known as 
Comorin Christians. Xavier was canonised by Pope 
Gregory XV in 1621. Fishermen are said, even at the 
present day, to call out "Xavier, Xavier," in times of storm 
and danger. Robert de Nobili (1606-56) founded a 
mission at Madura in 1624, in the reign of Tirumala Naik. 
The Lutheran missionaries Ziegenbalg and Pliitschau 
were sent to India in 1706 by the King of Denmark, to 
found the Royal Danish Mission. Ziegenbalg was buried 
at the New Jerusalem church, Tranquebar. He was the 
author of a useful work on the Genealogy of the South 
Indian gods. The Jesuit missionary Beschi, who arrived 
at Goa in 1707, proceeded to Madura, and became Dfwan to 
Chanda Sahib. He wrote many poems and religious works 
in Tamil. The Danish missionary Schwartz (1726-90) 
was sent by the Madras Government on a secret mission 
to Haidar AH at Seringapatam. He settled at Trichi- 
nopoly, where he became army chaplain. His grave is in 


St Peter's church, Tanjore, and his memory is perpetuated 

Fig. 86. Abbe Dubois. 

by a statue by Flaxman, representing the last visit of Raja 
Sarabhoji to him, in Christ Church, which he built. The 


Danish missionary Gericke was a contemporary of Schwartz. 
Abb6 Dubois (1765 — 1848), who was attached to the 
Pondicherry mission, proceeded to Mysore after the death 
of Tipu Sultan in 1799, to reconvert the forced perverts to 
Islam. During his long sojourn in India, he made a close 
study of Native life, and his Mceiirs, Institutions, et Cere- 
monies des Penples de V Inde, which has been translated into 
English, survives as a classic. His portrait, painted by 
Thomas Hickey, is now the property of the Madras 
Literary Society. Claudius Buchanan (1766 — -1815), who 
came to India as a chaplain on the Calcutta establishment, 
was the author of Christian Researches in India. He made 
tours in Southern India, and translated the Scriptures into 
Malayalam and other languages. Reginald Heber(i783 — 
1826), Bishop of Calcutta, and author of many hymns and 
poems, died in a swimming-bath at Trichinopoly, after 
delivering an address from the steps of Schwartz's house. 
He was buried in the Church of St John. Daniel Corrie 
(1777 — 1836), who came to India as a Bengal chaplain, 
was consecrated as first Bishop of Madras in 1835. His 
memory is kept green by a statue in the Cathedral, and by 
Bishop Corrie's School. In quite recent times, Robert 
Caldwell was missionary Bishop of Tinnevelly (1877-91), 
and was the author of The Comparative Grammar of the 
Draz'idian langjiages, and other works. 

Sir Thomas Strange was the first Chief Justice of 
Madras (i 801-16), when the Recorder's Court was super- 
seded by the Supreme Court. Charles Philip Brown 
(C. P. B.), at one time Judge of Masulipatam, where his 
house was known as Brown's College, was the author of 
a Telugu Dictionary and Grammar, which are recognised 
standard works. Arthur Coke Burnell, a former Judge of 
Tanjore, published a classified Index to the Sanskrit 
Manuscripts in the Tanjore Palace Library, and was the 
author of A Ha7id-book of South Indian Palczography, and 

T. 16 


other works. In collaboration with Sir Henr)' Yule, he 
compiled the invaluable Hobson-Jobsoii : a Glossary of 
Anglo-Indian Words and PJirases. Hobson-Jobson, it may- 
be noted, is a corruption of the Mohurrum cry " Hasan, 
Husain." John Dawson Mayne, who practised at the 
Madras Bar from 1857-72, was the author of many works, 
which included Commentaries on tJic Indian Penal Code, 
Treatise on Hindu Law and Usage, and TJie Criminal Laiv 
of India. Thackeray dedicated The Virginians to Sir 
Henry Davison, who was Chief Justice of Madras ( 1 859-60). 
Among lawyers of recent times, whose memory is held in 
esteem, are Sir Charles Turner, Chief Justice of Madras, 
William Holloway and SirT. Mutusawmy Aiyar, Judges 
of the High Court, and John Bruce Norton, Advocate- 

In the domain of Botany, Hendrik van Rheede, a 

Governor of the Malabar coast, published (1686 — 1703) a 

book on the flora of the west coast, entitled Hortus Mala- 

baricns (the garden of Malabar), which was edited by 

Commelyn. The letter-press thereof was written under 

the superintendence of Casearius, and the drawings were 

mostly done by Mathasus. The French naturalist Sonnerat, 

who visited South India in the eighteenth century, made 

large botanical collections. He was followed by Lesche- 

nault de la Tour, Perrottet, and Noton. Koenig, the 

Danish physician to the Tranquebar Mission, with the 

missionaries Rottler, Klein, and Heyne (" the United 

Brothers "), made extensive collections during their tours 

in the south. The German missionaries Bernard Schmid 

and Hohenacker collected plants mainly on the Nilgiris, 

During his journey through Mysore, Canara, and Malabar, 

Francis Buchanan (Hamilton) brought together a very 

considerable herbarium, and made many drawings and 

descriptions of the plants which he collected. William 

Roxburgh, keeper of the Calcutta Botanical Gardens, was 


the author (1795-9H) of Coroiiumdel Plants, of which he 
made a collection when surgeon at Samalkot in the 
Godavari district, and Flora Indica (1820-32). Robert 
Wight, of the Madras Medical Service, made large botanical 
collections, and was the author of Icones Plantariun Indite 
Orient a lis (1840-53), Spicileginm Ncilgherrense, and, in 
conjunction with Arnott, of the Prodronms Florcs Pe?iinsnlcE 
Indies Orientalis. Colonel R. H. Beddome, head of the 
Madras Forest Department, was the author of The Ferns 
of Southern India (1863), Flora Sylvatica (1869), and other 
works. More recently, our knowledge of the flora of 
South India has been increased by the work of M. A. 
Lawson and C. A. Barber, Government Botanists, and 
J. S. Gamble, F.R.S. 

Patrick Russell, who was Botanist to the East India 
Company, published An Account of the Indian Snakes 
collected on the Coast of Coromandel (1796), and A Descrip- 
tion of 200 Fishes collected at Vizagapatani (1803). T. C. 
Jerdon, of the Madras Medical Service, was the author of 
Ilhistrations of Indian Ornithology ( 1 847), Birds of India 
(1862), and Mammals of India (1867), which bear the 
impress of the born naturalist. Edward Nicholson, Assis- 
tant Surgeon, Royal Artillery, wrote an elementary treatise 
on Ophiology, entitled Lidian Snakes (1870). Francis 
Day, of the Madras Medical Service, made a special study 
of Ichthyology, and published Fishes of Malabar (1865), 
The Fishes of India (1876-78), the volumes on fishes in the 
Fanna of British India, and numerous reports on the fishes 
of India and Great Britain. 

In the field of Geology, Francis Buchanan made con- 
siderable geological and mineralogical collections during 
his South Indian travels. These he presented to the 
Marquess Wellesley, who had them placed in the library 
of the East India Company in London. H. W. Voysey, 
who wrote on various geological subjects between 1827 

16 — 2 


and 1833, gave an account of the native steel smelters in 
South India. Captain J. T. Newbold, F.R.S., published a 
large number of papers between 1833 and 1848. His 
work included references to the beryl mines of Padi)'ur ; 
the nature of laterite, and of the black cotton soils ; the 
magnesite and chromite of the Salem district ; and various 
geological accounts of his journeys in South India, followed 
by a summary of the geology thereof, published in the 
Journal of tJie Royal Asiatic Society (1846, 1848, and 1850). 
C. T. Kaye, of the Madras Civil Service, who discovered 
the fossiliferous Cretaceous rocks of the Trichinopoly and 
Pondicherry areas, published various papers between 1840 
and 1846. H. F. Blanford wrote the Geological Survey 
Memoirs on the Cretaceous rocks of the Trichinopoly area 
in 1863, and afterwards described some of the fossils. He 
also wrote a memoir on the Nllgiris in 1858. In more 
recent times, geological work has been carried out in 
South India by W. King, R. Bruce Foote, and other 
members of the Geological Survey Department. 

Norman Robert Pogson, who was Government As- 
tronomer in Madras from 1861-91, was the discoverer of 
nine minor planets (Isis, Amphitrite, Ariadne, etc.) and 
twenty-one variable stars. 

In the first rank of Indian administrators in recent 
times must be placed Sir Sheshadri Aiyar, the celebrated 
Divvan of Mysore (1883-90). He is said to have "laboured 
assiduously to promote the economic and industrial develop- 
ment (gold-mining, railways, etc.) of the State, commencing 
with a deficit of 30 lakhs of rupees, and leaving with a 
surplus of 176 lakhs." 

Ravi Varma, the well-known artist, painted the por- 
traits of many Indian Princes and others, He was a Koil 
Tampuran of Travancore, and connected by marriage with 
the Maharaja of that State. 

The Rev. V. S. Azariah, who was quite recently 


consecrated as Assistant Bishop of Madras, is the first 
Indian to be raised to the AngHcan episcopate. The 
Syrian Church on the west coast has had Indian bishops 
for many centuries. 



[The bracketed figures after each name give the population at the census, 
1 yo 1 .] 

Adoni (30,416), in the Bellary district. The most 
conspicuous building is the Jama Masjid, which is a fine 
specimen of Muhammadan architecture, built with materials 
from several Hindu temples by Sidi Masud Khan, a 
Governor of Bijapur, who retired to Adoni in the seven- 
teenth century. The town is at the present day an 
important centre of the cotton trade. The population 
is largely Muhammadan. Coins struck at Adoni by 
several Moghul emperors bear the name Imtiyazgarh 
(fort of distinction), which is said to have been given by 

Alwaye (3,645), a village in Travancore, called by 
the Portuguese Fiera d'Alva, which is a health resort for 
residents at Cochin during the hot weather. At the 
Sivaratri festival, a large gathering of Hindus collects 
at the Siva temple in the bed of the Alwaye (Periyar) 
river, on the banks of which the religious reformer Sankara 
Acharya is said to have been born. 

Anantapur (7,938). The administrative head-quarters 
of the Anantapur district. When the Ceded Districts were 
handed over to the English in 1800, Major (afterwards 
Sir Thomas) Munro, who was appointed Collector thereof, 


took up his abode here. Natives still name their children 
Munrol or Munrolappa. 

Arcot (10,734), i" the North Arcot district, was 
formerly the capital of the Navvabs of the Carnatic, also 
known as the Nawabs of Arcot. Their palace is now in 
ruins, and the Delhi gate remains as the relic of the old 
rampart. The upkeep of the tomb of Nawab Saadat-ullah 

Fig. 87. Hill Fort, Anantapur. 

Khan (1710 — 1732), in whose time the capital was trans- 
ferred from Gingee to Arcot, is still provided for by- 

Bangalore (159,046). The seat of Government of 
the Mysore State and residence of the Maharaja. The 
name, meaning city of beans (bengalu uru), is derived from 
a legend that a Hoysala king was once overtaken by night, 
and supped off beans and water provided by an old woman 


in a hut. The town is divided into two main quarters, the 
pettah or native town, and the civil and military station, 
under the control of the British Resident, in which the 
garrison is quartered. The Mysore Imperial Service 
Lancers and Mysore Bar Infantry are also quartered 
in the town. The Government Offices are located in the 
Cubbon Park, named after Sir Mark Cubbon, Commis- 
sioner of Mysore from 1834 to i86r, to whose memory 
an equestrian statue was erected. At the unveiling thereof 
the forehead was found daubed with Hindu sect-marks. 
Other buildings include the Central College, and the Indian 
Institute of Research, founded from Mr Tata's munificent 
bequest. The beautiful public garden, called the Lai Bagh, 
dates from the time of Haidar Ali. 

Bellary (58,247). The administrative head-quarters 
of the Bellary district. It consists of several divisions, 
called the upper fort or fort hill, lower fort, cantonment 
for British and Indian troops, civil station, and several 
native quarters. The Cowl Bazar derives its name from 
the fact that it was originally occupied by followers and 
bazarmen attached to the troops, who had an agreement 
(cowl) that they should be free from taxes. During the 
Boer war deported prisoners were detained at Bellary. 

BELUR, in Mysore. Celebrated for the temple of Chenna 

Bezwada (24,224), in the Kistna district, where the 
great anient (dam) has been constructed across the Kisna 

BiMPLlPATAM (10,212), a sea-port town in the Godavari 

BOBBILI (17,837), a corruption of pedda puli, or great 
tiger. A town in the Vizagapatam district, where the 
Maharaja of Bobbili resides. The title of Maharaja was 
conferred on the Raja in 1900. The place is celebrated in 
history for the attack on the fort by the French under 

T' H 













Bussy and the army of Viziaram Razu in 1756. When 
Bussy entered the fort, he found every man of the garrison 
dead or mortally wounded. During the attack, in order to 
preserve the women and children from violation by the 
enemy, the habitations in the fort were set fire to, and 
those who attempted to escape were stabbed. The tragedy 
is commemorated by an obelisk erected by the Maharaja, 
to whom the town owes the Victoria Market, Victoria 
Memorial Hall, a gosha hospital, and other buildings. 

Calicut (76,981). The administrative head-quarters 
of Malabar, which gives its name to the cotton cloth 
called calico. At West Hill are the barracks for British 
infantry. At the suburb of Kallayi, where the Kallayi 
river opens into the sea, there is a steam saw-mill for 
sawing timber, much of which is floated down the river. 

Calingapatam (5,019), a sea-port on the Ganjam 

Cannanore (27,811), a sea-port town in Malabar, 
which was, in former times, an important military station, 
of which many evidences survive. 

Chidambaram (19,909), in the South Arcot district, 
regarded by Saivites as one of the five most sacred places 
in South India, the others being Conjeeveram, Kalahasti, 
Tiruvanaikovil, and Tiruvannamalai. At Chidambaram 
the emblem of the god is the ether linga, which has no 
actual existence, but is represented by an empty space in 
the holy of holies called the akasa or ether linga, wherein 
lies the so-called Chidambara rahasya, or secret of worship 
at Chidambaram. The deity worshipped is Natesa or 
Nataraja, the lord or king of dancers. Of late years the 
Nattukottai Chettis (bankers and money-lenders) have 
spent very large sums on the restoration of the temple. 
The temple affairs are managed by a class of Brahmans 
called Dikshitars, who are also known as Thillai Muvayira- 
var, or the three thousand who started from Benares for 


Thillai (now Chidambaram). They depend for their main- 
tenance and the upkeep of the temple on public offerings, 
and go about the country soliciting subscriptions. Like 
various Malabar castes, the Dikshitars wear the kudumi 
(top-knot) in the front of the head. 

Chingleput (io,S5i), in the Chingleput district. The 
town contains the Reformatory School, where the youthful 
criminals of the Madras Presidency receive an excellent 
industrial education. The old fort overlooks a picturesque 
tank, two miles long by one mile broad. A cave outside 
the town, originally constructed for a Buddhist hermit's 
cell, has been converted into a Siva temple. 

Chittoor (10,893). The administrative head-quarters 
of the North Arcot district, situated 990 feet above the sea. 
The locality is celebrated for its mangoes, which flourish in 
topes (groves or orchards) in the neighbourhood. 

COCANADA (48,096). The administrative head-quarters 
of the Godavari district, and the chief sea-port on the 
Coromandel coast north of Madras. 

Cochin includes several distinct quarters. Of these, 
British Cochin is situated on a strip of land between the 
backwater and the sea, opposite the island of Vypeen. 
The church, one of the oldest existing English churches 
in India, contains many Portuguese and Dutch tombstones. 
One of these bears the words VASCO DA..., but the armorial 
bearings are not those of the Da Gama family. The native 
quarter of Mattancheri adjoins British Cochin, and contains 
within it Jew's Town, occupied by the black and white Jews. 
Across the water is Ernakulam, the capital of the Cochin 
State, which has a durbar hall, public offices, and many 
institutions. The British Residency is on the island of 
Balghotty, close to Ernakulam, 

COIMBATORE (53,080). The administrative head- 
quarters of the Coimbatore district, situated 1300 feet 
above the sea, between the Nllgiri and Anaimalai hills. 


with a light rainfall and moderate mean temperature. 
The College of Agriculture has recently been transferred 
there from Madras, and a Forest School has been opened. 

CONJEEVERAM (46,164), in the Chingleput district. The 
name is a corruption of Kanchipuram, meaning the shining 
or golden city. It is the most sacred town in South India, 
and, according to popular tradition, contains ten thousand 
lingams and a thousand temples. The great temple, at 
which the lingam is worshipped, is dedicated to Siva under 
the name of Yekambara Nadar, or lord of the one ether. 
The temple next in importance is dedicated to Vishnu 
under the name of Varatarajaswami. Yet another temple 
is dedicated to Kamakshi, the wife of Siva. There are, in 
the town, many sacred tanks (ponds), by bathing in seven of 
which, corresponding to the days of the week, any human 
desire may be gratified and sins washed away. In the 
suburb of Tirupattikundram is a beautiful little Jain temple, 
w^ith a cloistered court. It is a matter of history that 
Sir Hector Munro, who had retreated to Chingleput on 
hearing of Colonel Baillie's defeat a few miles off, threw 
his heavy guns and baggage into the tank of the Siva 

COONOOR (8,525), a favourite hot-weather resort on the 
Nllgiri hills, 6000 feet above the sea, with a more temperate 
climate than Ootacamund. The climate is well adapted 
for fuchsias, roses, heliotrope, and tree-ferns, which grow 
luxuriantly. The place was visited by the Countess Canning, 
wife of the Viceroy, in 1858, and Lady Canning's Seat is 
named after her. The well laid-out public garden, known 
as Sim's Park, is named after Mr J. D. Sim, a former 
member of the Governor's Council, who initiated it in 1 874. 
From Tiger's Hill, a magnificent view over the plains, ex- 
tending as far as the Anaimalai hills, is obtained. In the 
cemetery of All Saint's Church, Bishop Gell, who was 
Bishop of Madras from 1861 to 1898, lies buried. A 


Pasteur Institute has been erected in recent years for the 
treatment of those who have been bitten by rabid dogs or 

CUDDALORE (52,216). The administrative head-quarters 
of the South Arcot district. The name is said to be derived, 
not from kadal-ur, meaning sea-town, but from kudal-ur, 
denoting a junction, or the place where the Ponnaiyar and 
Gadilam rivers meet. The town is divided into two main 
quarters, the Old Town, which is the business centre, and 
the New Town. The ruined Fort St David, with its subter- 
ranean passages, is situated within the municipal limits. 
The Collector's residence is the Garden House, which 
was formerly occupied by the local Governors. 

CUDDAPAH (16,432). The administrative head-quarters 
of the Cuddapah district. It has a bad reputation for 
malaria. The English church, designed by Mr Chisholm 
when Government Architect, is one of the prettiest of the 
mofussil (up-country) churches. 

DiNDIGUL (25,182), in the Madura district, situated 
about 880 feet above the sea, and celebrated for the 
manufacture of cheroots. 

GiNGEE (524), a village in the South Arcot district, 
formerly the residence of a Viceroy of the Vijayanagar king. 
It is famous for its three forts, situated on three hills, named 
Kistnagiri, Rajagiri, and Chandraya Drug. The forts abound 
in relics of the past. Such, for example, are the Muham- 
madan building called the Audience Chamber, and granary, 
on Kistnagiri, and the building known as the Treasury, the 
masonry flagstaff, and cannon eleven feet long on Rajagiri. 
The Kalyana Mahal consists of a square court, with a tower 
of eight stories in the centre, surrounded by rooms, which 
is supposed to have been used by the ladies of the Governor's 
household. A long, smooth slab of rock is known as the 
Raja's bathing-stone. The prisoner's well is a natural hole 
in a boulder about twenty feet long, down which prisoners 


are said to have been dropped, and left to die of starva- 

GOOTY (9,682), in the Anantapur district, celebrated for 
its hill fortress. On the top of a hill is a pavilion called 
Morari Rao's seat, where the Maratha chieftain is said to 
have played chess and watched prisoners being hurled 
from the summit of a neighbouring rock. The body of 
Sir Thomas Munro, who died at Pattikanda in 1827, rested 
here for a short time, and a cenotaph was erected to his 
memory. His name is perpetuated by the Munro chattram 
for the accommodation of travellers. Coins were struck at 
Gooty by the Moghul Emperor Farrukhsiyar. 

GoPALPUR (2,150). The chief sea-port of Ganjam. An 
iron pier was opened in 1887, but has proved useless for 
shipping, as, though 860 feet long, it does not extend 
beyond the line of surf 

GUNTUR (30,833). The administrative head-quarters 
of the Guntur district. 

HalebId (1,524). A village in Mysore on the site of 
the former capital of the Hoysala kings, called Dorasamudra 
or Dvaravatipura. It is celebrated for the Hoysalesvara 
and Kedaresvara temples. 

Hampi, a small village in the Bellary district, which 
has given the name of the Hampi ruins to the magnificent 
remains of the city of Vijayanagar, the former capital of 
the Vijayanagar dynasty, which cover about nine square 
miles. The most beautiful of the ruins is the Vittalaswami 
temple near the bank of the Tungabhadra river. Other 
ruins include the Queen's bath, the elaborately carved 
platform called the Dasara Dibba, the mint, the temple of 
Hazara Ramaswami, the elephant stables, and the dancing- 
girls' street. 

HOSUR (6,695), in the Salem district. The Remount 
Depot, from which horses — mostly walers imported from 
Australia — are supplied to the cavalry and artillery, is 













situated four miles from tlie town. The name waler is 
derived from New South Wales, 

Kalahasti (11,992), in the North Arcot district, where 
the Raja of Kalahasti, one of the largest zamindaris in the 
Madras Presidency, has his residence. It is celebrated for 
its temple dedicated to Siva, where the vaya or wind linga 
is worshipped. The Sivaratri festival is celebrated in the 
month of Masi (February — March) with great pomp. 

KODAIKANAL (1,912). A hill-station, 7,000 feet above 
the sea, in the Madura district. Some of the first houses 
were built by American missionaries from Madura. A 
swamp was converted into a beautiful lake by Mr (after- 
wards Sir) Hugh Levinge, Collector of Madura, in 1863. 
Popular expeditions for hot-weather visitors include those 
to Pillar Rocks and the summit of Perumal hill (7,326 feet). 
At the Observatory, which was erected a few years ago, 
important investigations in solar physics have been carried 
out. At Shembaganur, below Kodaikanal, is a Jesuit 
Theological College. 

KOTAGIRI (5,100). A hill-station on the eastern side 
of the Nllgiri plateau, 6,500 feet above the sea, which is 
increasing in favour as a quiet hot-weather resort. It 
receives its name from the village of the Kotas, who are 
the artisans of the hills, and, in addition, cultivate food- 
grains, barley, potatoes, etc. Their two thatched temples 
are a conspicuous feature of the settlement. Kotagiri was 
visited by the Earl of Dalhousie, when he was Governor- 

KOTTAYAM (17,522), in Travancore, is an important 
centre of the Syrian Christians, and possesses one of the 
oldest Syrian churches on the west coast. In the Syrian 
seminary are preserved two copper-plate charters, which 
have been deciphered by several epigraphists. 

KUMBAKONAM (59,673), in the Tanjore district. The 
name is derived from kumbha, an earthen pot, and ghona. 


a nose or neck, and is connected with a legend of Brahma, 
whose pot, containing the essence of the sacred waters of 
the world, rested, after the deluge, at the spot now occupied 
by the Kumbheswara temple. The town is celebrated for 
the Mahamakam tank, where orthodox Hindus believe 
that the holy waters of the Ganges appear once in twelve 
years, when the planet Jupiter is in conjunction with the 
moon in the makha asterism of the constellation Leo. The 
event attracts enormous numbers of pilgrims, who bathe e7t 
masse in the tank. The depth of the water therein is said 
to be lowered by the municipal authorities, so that the 
pilgrims can bathe without fear of getting drowned, 

KURNOOL (25,376). The administrative head-quarters 
of the Kurnool district, situated at the confluence of the 
Tungabhadra and Hindri rivers. 

Madanapalle (14,084), in the Cuddapah district, at 
an altitude of 2,250 feet above the sea. A favourite resort 
of district officials during the hot w^eather. 

Madras (509,346) is the third largest city of the Indian 
Empire, and the head-quarters of the Madras Government 
from October till April. In former days the official resi- 
dence of the Governor was the Fort House, now occupied 
by the Government Secretariat. The existing Government 
House is on the site originally occupied by the Governor's 
Garden House, of which Government House, Guindy, or 
Guindy Lodge, acquired in the time of Sir Thomas Munro, 
has been described as the lineal successor. In the park-like 
grounds of Government House is the Banqueting Hall, built 
when Lord Clive was Governor in 1802. The battle of 
Plassey (1757), from which his father, Robert Clive, took 
the title of Baron Clive of Plassey, and the storming of 
Seringapatam (1799), at which Tipu Sultan was slain, are 
commemorated on the north and south pediments thereof. 
The Fort and southern suburbs were formerly known as 
the White Town, as distinguished from the native quarter 


to the north, cahed the Bhiek Town, which is now the 
commercial centre of the city. The name Black Town 
was changed to George Town, to commemorate the visit of 
the Prince of Wales to Madras in 1906. The most densely 
populated native quarters at the present day are George 
Town and Triplicane. The principal Hindu temples are 
situated in Triplicane and Mylapore. A large proportion 
of the Eurasian community lives in Vepery. The prin- 
cipal European quarters are in Egmore, Chetpat, Kilpauk, 
Nungumbaukum, Teynampet, and on the north bank of 


i i i S S 11 

Fig. 90. Government House and Banqueting Hall, Madras. 

the Adyar river. On the south side of the Adyar are the 
head-quarters of the Theosophical Society, which is asso- 
ciated with the names of Madame Blavatsky, Colonel 
Olcott, and Mrs Annie Besant. The open space, called 
the Island, which is reserved by the military department 
as part of the fire zone round the Fort, and is the home of 
the Gymkhana Club, is formed by the Cooum river. Other 
open spaces, or lungs, are the People's Park, the Napier 
and Robinson Parks, named after the Governors during 
whose period of office they were laid out, and the gardens 
T. 17 


of tlie Agri-horticultural Society. The Marina, suggested 
by that at Palermo, which owes its existence to Sir Mount- 
stuart Grant Duff, runs along the sea-face from the Napier 
Bridge southward to St Thome. Along the Marina are 
the Presidency College, Marine Aquarium, Chepauk Palace 
built by Nawab W'alajah of Arcot, and now used as an 
office by the Board of Revenue, the College of Engineering, 
and the Senate House of the Madras University, created as 
an examining corporation in 1857, where the Governor as 

Fig. 91. Chepauk Palace, Madras. 

Chancellor confers degrees. Further north are the Law 
Courts, surmounted by the light-house 166 feet above sea- 
level, and the Law College. The foundation-stone of the 
Luz Church bears the date 15 16, and the St Thome 
Cathedral contains memorials of the Portuguese, com- 
mencing from 1557. St Mary's Church in the Fort, which 
is the earliest English church in India, was consecrated in 
1680. There were buried, among others, Sir Thomas Munro 
and Lord Pigot, Governors of Madras. The Roman Catholic 
Cathedral in Armenian Street was erected by the Capuchins 


in 1775. St George's Cathedral wa.-? consecrated in 1815, 
and St Andrew's (the Scotch Kirk) in 1821. The name of 
the old weavers' quarter of Chintadripett is said to be a 
corruption of St Andrew's pett. The new Portuguese 
Cathedral in St Thome is reputed to occupy the site 
where, according to tradition, St Thomas was buried after 
he had been murdered. The Observatory, from which the 
weather reports and storm warnings are now issued, dates 
back to the end of the eighteenth century. The Memorial 
Hall was erected by public subscription, to commemorate 
the freedom from disturbance in Madras in the dark days 
of the Mutiny, during which Lord Harris, at that time 
Governor of Madras, allowed Madras to be denuded of 
troops for service in North India. The mutinx' led to the 
raising of the Madras Volunteer Guards, which still survive. 
The present Museum was former!}- the. Pantheon, or As- 
sembly Rooms, where banquets, balls, and theatricals were 
held. There, in 1793, the Marquis Cornwallis, and the 
hostage princes of M)'sore, were entertained. There, too, 
in 1805, Sir Arthur Wellesley (afterwards Duke of Wel- 
lington) was entertained on his departure from India. 
Adjoining the Museum and Connemara Public Library is 
the Victoria Memorial Building, the foundation stone of 
which was laid by the Prince of Wales in 1906. The 
Madras Club was founded in 1831, and the Cosmopolitan 
Club in more recent years. A cenotaph near the Law 
Courts contains two tablets, one to the infant son of Elihu 
Yale, Governor of Madras (1687-92), and the other to 
Mrs Yale's first husband. The cenotaph originally erected 
to the memory of the Marquis Cornwallis in Teynampet 
was subsequently moved to the front of the old High 
Court, now the Post Ofifice. A replica of Boehm's statue 
of Queen Victoria is situated near the Senate House, and 
one of King Edward VII by Wade outside the gates of 
Government House. The equestrian statue by Chantrey 

17 — 2 

Fig. 92. Statue of the Marquis Cornwallis. 


of Sir Thomas Munro keeps green the memory of the 
celebrated Governor of Madras. According to a legend, 
Sir Thomas Munro seized upon all the rice depots, and 
starved the people by selling rice in egg-shells at one shell 
for a rupee. To punish him, the Government erected the 
statue in an open place without a canopy, so that the 
birds of the air might pollute his face. The statue of the 
Marquis Cornwallis, Governor-General and Commander-in- 
Chief, was removed a few years ago from the Fort square 
to the Connemara Library. On the pedestal of the statue 
he is represented receiving the two youthful sons of Tipu 
Sultan as hostages after the siege of Seringapatam in 1792. 
The statue of General Neill, of the Madras Fusiliers, in the 
Mount Road, opposite the entrance to the Madras Club, 
perpetuates the memory of one who, as recorded on his 
monument at Ayr, stemmed the torrent of rebellion in 
Bengal, and fell gloriously at the relief of Lucknow in 
1857. A statue of the Rev. William Miller was erected 
in 1900 on the Esplanade opposite the Madras Christian 
College, of which he was Principal for many years. A 
statue in the Law Courts honours the memory of Sir T. 
Mutusawmy Aiyar, a former Judge of the High Court. 
The Presidency College contains a statue of Mr K. B. 
Powell, a former Principal thereof and Director of Public 

Madura (105,984). The administrative head-quarters 
of the Madura district. The town, which is situated on the 
right bank of the Vaigai river, is celebrated for the great 
temple of Sundareswara and Minakshi, the palace of Tiru- 
mala Naik, and the Teppakulam (raft-tank) with a small 
temple on an island in the centre. The Vasanta or Pudu 
Mantapam, which is a hall 333 feet long by 105 feet wide, 
is said to have been built as a summer residence for the 
god Sundareswara. The chattram near the railway station 
is attributed to Mangammal, the Queen-Regent of the 






Nayakkan dynasty (1689—1704). The residence of tlie 
Collector, called the Tamakam, is referred to in old records 
as the choultry called Fort Defiance, which was an outpost 
during the siege of Madura in 1764. The presence of large 
numbers of small copper coins of the Roman Emperors 
(Tiberius, Honorius, etc.) in the bed of the Vaigai river 
seems to point to the existence of a Roman colony at 
Madura at one period of its history. 

Malapfuram (9,216). A village situated in the centre 
of the area in which the Mappilla (Moplah) fanatical 
(fanum, a temple) outbreaks have disturbed the peace of 
Malabar from time to time. A detachment of European 
troops has been quartered there since 1873, and a special 
police force since 1885. During the outbreak at Manjeri 
in 1896, the fanatics, when advancing to attack, were 
mostly shot down at a distance of 700 to 800 yards, every 
man wounded having his throat cut by his nearest friend. 
Those who die fighting are regarded as martyrs or saints. 

Mangalore (44,108). The administrative head-quarters 
of the South Canara district, situated on the backwater 
formed by the Netravati and Gurpur rivers. About 25 per 
cent, of the population are Christians. The St Aloysius 
College was founded by the Jesuit Mission in 1880. 

Masulipatam (39,507), a sea-port on the coast of the 
Kistna district, which is also called Bunder (sea-port). The 
name bunder-boat is sometimes used on the east coast for 
boats which communicate with ships lying at anchor. Coins 
struck at Masulipatam by the Moghul Emperor Aurangzlb 
bear the name Machlipatam (fish-town). It was formerly 
celebrated for its carpets and cotton fabrics (palempores, 


MELUKOTE (3,129), a sacred town in Mysore, which is 
the seat of the Srivaishnava Yatiraja math, founded by the 
reformer Ramanuja in the twelfth century. The principal 
temple is that of Cheluvapille-raya or Krishna, and there 


is a further temple of Narasimha on the summit of a rock. 
The population is very largely composed of Brahmans. 
A fine white clay, said to have been discovered by Embe- 
rumanar or Ramanuja, is used for making the namam or 
sect-mark on the forehead, and is even consigned to Benares 
for this purpose. 

Mercara (6,732), the chief town of the province of 
Coorg, situated about 4,000 feet above the sea. The native 
town is called Mahadevapet or Mahadeopet. The fort was 
built by Tipu Sultan, who, with his liking for new names, 
called it Jafarabad. Inside the fort is the palace, built by 
Linga Raja in 181 2. One of the Rajas is said to have 
amused himself by standing on a balcony with a rifle, and 
making prisoners run across the yard, while he fired at 
them, under the promise that, if they escaped as far as the 
life-size figure of an elephant in the corner of the yard, 
their lives would be spared. The tombs of the Rajas 
have been described as a combination of the Hindu and 
Saracenic styles. 

Mysore (68,111), a corruption of Mahisur, or bufl'alo 
town. The capital of the Mysore State, and residence of 
the Maharaja, whose magnificent new palace, built to 
replace the old one, which was partially destroyed by fire 
in 1897, bears testimony to the skill of the modern artisans. 
The extensive new quarter of the city is called Chamaraj, 
after the late Maharaja. The city contains many public 
buildings, such as the Victoria Jubilee Institute, public 
offices, and law courts. The house occupied by Colonel 
Arthur Wellesley (afterwards Duke of Wellington) when 
Governor of Mysore after the battle of Seringapatam (1799) 
still exists. The Residency, now called Government House, 
was built when Major Wilks was British Resident, and added 
to a few years later by Sir John Malcolm. The Dasara 
festival is celebrated at Mysore with great pomp. South- 
east of the town is Chamundi hill, named after the goddess 



















Kali or Chamundi, who is worshipped in the temple at the 
summit. A flight of stone steps leads thereto, and, on the 
way. is the colossal recumbent figure of the sacred bull Nandi. 

Nagercoil (25,712), formerly the capital of Travan- 
core. The name is derived from the temple dedicated to 
the snake-god (naga kovil), where many stone images of 
snakes are deposited. There is a belief that snake-bite is 
not fatal within a mile of the temple. Native Christian 
women are employed in the manufacture of lace. 

Nanjangud (5,991), in Mysore, celebrated for the 
temple of Nanjundesvara. The annual car- festival attracts 
a number of devotees. Some Todas of the Nllgiris have 
been known to make a pilgrimage to the temple, and 
sacrifice their locks as a thank-offering for the birth of 
male issue. 

Nellore (32,040). The administrative head-quarters 
of the Nellore district. 

OOTACAMUND( 1 8,596), a hill-station on the Nilgiris,over 
7,000 feet above the sea, which is the head-quarters of the 
Madras Government during the hot weather. The Govern- 
ment Offices are situated on Stonehouse hill, where the first 
house was built by Mr Sullivan, Collector of Coimbatore, 
in 1 82 1. Government House, the building of which was 
commenced in 1876, when the Duke of Buckingham was 
Governor of Madras, stands above the beautiful Govern- 
ment Gardens, which started as a kitchen-garden in 1845. 
In the valley between the surrounding hills, an extensive 
lake has been formed by damming a stream which runs 
through the low-lying ground, part of which has been 
levelled to form the Hobart Park for the Gymkhana Club 
and race-course. The station is now overgrown with intro- 
duced Australian blue-gums {Eticalyptus), Acacia uiclan- 
oxyloii and golden wattle (^4 (Tcrr/V? dcalbatd). The great charm 
lies in the open downs, which are the home of the Ootaca- 
mund Hunt. 












Palamcottah (39,545). The administrative head- 
quarters of the Tinnevelly district. It is an important 
centre of the Christian Missions, and the residence of the 
Bishop of Tinnevelly. 

Palmaner (4,850). A village in the North Arcot 
district, 2,247 f^et above the sea. Owing to its cool climate, 
it serves as a sanitarium for district officials. 

Pattikonda (4,373). A village in the Kurnool 
district, where Sir Thomas Munro, when Governor of 
Madras, died of cholera in 1827. To his memory Govern- 
ment had a well constructed, and a mantapam or porch 
built, round which a grove of tamarind trees was planted. 

PiRMED, a small hill-station in Travancore, about 3,500 
feet above the sea, surrounded by tea estates. Its name, 
meaning Pirs hill, is said to be derived from a Muham- 
madan saint, named Pir Muhammad, who lived there in 

PONDICHERRY (27,448), the capital of the French Pos- 
sessions in India. The town is divided into two quarters, 
the Ville Blanche and Ville Noire, corresponding to the 
White Town and Black Town of Madras. Some of the 
streets are named after Frenchmen celebrated in Indian 
history, e.g. Rue Dupleix, Rue Mahc de La Bourdonnais, 
etc. Facing the pier in the Place de la Republique or 
Place Dupleix is a statue of Dupleix, erected in 1870, 
which is mounted on a pedestal formed of Hindu sculptures. 
These sculptures, and others which may be seen in the 
town, are said to have been originally carried off by the 
French from the Venkataramaswami temple at Gingee. 
The town possesses a Government House, Hotel de Ville, 
Cathedral, Public Library, and various official buildings. 
The water-supply is derived from artesian wells. The 
vehicle commonly used by residents is a "push-push," which 
is dragged and pushed by coolies. The sepoys (or spahis) 
are dressed in picturesque zouave uniform. 

Fig. 96. Statue of Dtipleix, Pondicherry. 


Porto Novo (13,712), a sea-port in the South Arcot 
district, founded by the Portuguese in the latter part of the 
sixteenth century. The name means in Portuguese New 
Haven. The town is called in Tamil Parangi-pettai (Euro- 
pean town), and b\' Muhammadans, Muhammad Bandar 
(port). A curious durga in the town is that of Araikasu 
Nachiyar, or the one pie lady, offerings to whom must on 
no account be worth more than one pie (yi^ of a rupee). 

PUDUKKOTTAI (20,347). The chief town of the Pu- 
dukkottai State, where the Raja has a palace, which is 
used on State occasions, e.g. at the Dasara festival. Many 
improvements were carried out in the town by Sir Seshayya 
Sastri, K.C.S.I., who was Dlwan-Regent during the mi- 
nority of the present Raja. 

PULICAT (5,448), in the Chingleput district, was formerly 
the principal settlement of the Dutch on the Coromandel 
coast. The Dutch cemetery, which is preserved by the 
Madras Government, contains many tombs elaborately 
carved with armorial bearings and lengthy inscriptions. 
The most imposing tomb is the mausoleum of one of the 
Governors. One of tlie entrances to the cemetery has a 
quaint Romanesque lich-gate, on each side of which is a 
carved skeleton, one holding an hour-glass, and the other 
supporting a skull on a column. 

QuiLON or Kollam (15,691), a sea-port on the Travan- 
core coast, and the western terminus of the Tinnevelly- 
Quilon railway. The palace of the Maharaja is on the 
border of the backwater, which was called by General 
Cullen the Loch Lomond of Travancore. There is, in 
Malabar, another Kollam or Ouilon. The Malayalis 
(inhabitants of the west coast) compute the time by the 
Kollam or Malabar era (M.E.), which commenced on 
25th August, 825 A.D. The commencement thereof is 
supposed to date either from the institution of the great 
Onam festival, or the departure of the last Perumal 


(Emperor) of Kerala for Arabia, whence he rlid not 

Rajahmundry (36,408), in the Godavari district, on 
the Godavari river. 

Ramnad (36,408), in the Rainnad district, contains the 
palace of the Raja of Ramnad, who is the head of the 
Maravan caste. The Rajas bear the title of Setupati, or 
lord of the bridge. According to tradition, the Setupati 
line took its rise in the time of Rama, who, on his return 
from Lanka (Ceylon), appointed seven guardians of the 
pass (Adam's bridge) connecting Ceylon with the Indian 
mainland. The Rajas formerly had the right of coinage, 
and the coins bear the word Setu or Setupati in Tamil 

RuSSELLKONDA (3,493) in Ganjam, named after Mr 
George Russell, who was deputed, between 1832 and 1836, to 
suppress the recalcitrant hill-chiefs called Bissoyis. Martial 
law was proclaimed, and some of the Bissoyis were hanged, 
and others transported. One result of Mr Russell's reports 
on the state of affairs in Ganjam was the suppression of the 
human (meriah) sacrifices practised by the hill Kondhs. 

St Thomas' Mount (15,571), a military cantonment 
(pronounced cantoonment) about eight miles from Madras, 
called by natives Parangimalai or European's hill (Parangi 
or Firingi, Frank or European). On the summit of the 
mount, which is 220 feet above the sea, is a Portuguese 
church, built on the spot where the cross of St Thomas 
the apostle is supposed to have been found. St Thomas, 
according to tradition, came to Mylapore, no\\' a suburb of 
Madras, and was stoned, and killed by Brahmans with a 
spear, near the mount. It is recorded, in connection with 
the disease called elephantiasis, that "the old Roman le- 
gendaries impute the cause of these great swelled legs 
to a curse St Thomas laid upon his murderers and their 


Salem (70,62 I ). The administrative head-quarters of 
the Salem district. 

SeRINGAPATAM (8,584), a corruption of Sri Ranga 
patam, or the town of SrI Ranga. Situated, in Mysore, 
on an island in the Cauverv river, the east end of which 
is occupied by the suburb of Ganjam. At the storming of 
the fort in 1799, Tipu Sultan was slain. The medal, struck 
in commemoration of the event, represents the fort, and 
the British lion jumping on the Mysore tiger. The tombs 
of Haidar AH and Tipu are within the mausoleum or 
Gumbaz, which was built by the latter. The doors of the 
inner entrance thereto, made of ebony inlaid with ivory, 
were presented by Lord Dalhousie, when he was Governor- 
General. The Darya Daulat Bagh was the summer palace 
of Tipu. The walls are decorated with an amusing series 
of grotesque pictures, illustrating the defeat of Colonel 
Baillie at Conjeeveram in 1780, Haidar and Tipu in pro- 
cession, etc. The pictures were defaced by Tipu before the 
siege, but restored by Lord Dalhousie. Near the Mysore 
gate is the large mosque erected by Tipu. The Wellesley 
bridge over the Cauvery was built by Purniya, the Diwan- 
Regent of Mysore, and named after the Marquess Wellesley, 
the Governor-General. 

SOMNATHPUR (1,468). A village in Mysore, celebrated 
for the Chenna Kesava temple. 

Sravana Belgola (1,926). A village in Mysore, 
famed for its Jain bastis, and the colossal figure of Gum- 
matta or Gomata Raya (p. 153). 

Sringeri (10,656), in Mysore. The math founded by 
the Hindu reformer Sankara Acharya, who lived about the 
ninth century, is situated there. This math is the seat of 
the high-priest of the Smarta Brahmans. Sringeri is the 
traditional birthplace of Rishya Sringa, a celebrated cha- 
racter in the Ramayana, who grew up to manhood without 
having ever seen a woman. He was enticed away to the 



north, became the priest of Dasaratha, and performed the 
sacrifice which resulted in the birth of Rama. 

SrirangAM (23,039), in the Trichinopoly district, on 

Fig-. 97. Carved pillars of portico, Srirangam temple. 

the island of Srirangam in the Cauvery river. It is 

celebrated for the great Vishnu temple of Ranganatha. 

According to tradition, the Orloff diamond, which is one 

T. iS 


of the Russian crown jewels, was once the eye of the idol, 
and was stolen by a French deserter in the eighteenth 
century. The Siva temple is very sacred, as it contains 
the water lingam. The reformer Ramanuja settled at 
Srirangam in his latter years. 

Tanjore (57,870). The administrative head-quarters 
of the Tanjore district, celebrated for the Brihatiswaraswami 
temple, with its colossal stone bull (Nandi). Among the 

Fig. 98. Colossal stone bull, Tanjore temple. 

Hindu figures on the tower, is that of a European, which, 
according to tradition, was prophetic of the advent of the 
British, or is the figure of a Dane, who helped to build the 
temple. A big iron cannon, nearly 30 feet long, is attributed 
to the same Dane. The Library contains a valuable col- 
lection of oriental manuscripts, brought together by the 
Nayak and Maratha kings of Tanjore. The palace of the 
latter contains portraits of the various kings, and a statue 
of Raja Sarabhoji b}' Chantrey. It is now occupied by 


the surviving Ranis of Raja Si\aji, on whose death in 
1855, the Raj became extinct. Three years before his 
death, he married, in addition to his existing wives, seven- 
teen girls. 

Tellicherry (27,883). A sea-port on the Malabar 
coast, which was once the principal British trading station 
on the west coast. Silver coins struck by the English 
East India Company bear the initial letter T, the scales of 
justice, the figures 99, and date 1805. 

TiNNEVELLY (40,469). The chief town in tlie Tinne- 
velly district, on the Tambraparni river. 

TiRUCHENDUR (26,056) in the Tinnevelly district. A 
great resort of pilgrims, who come there to visit the temple, 
which is built out into the sea. 

TiRUPATi (15,485), in the North Arcot district, some- 
times called Lower Tirupati, to distinguish it from Upper 
Tirupati or Tirumala, the sacred hill of pilgrimage. Many 
of those who resort thither do so in the performance of a 
vow made to the god Venkateswaraswami in case of sick- 
ness, desire for male offspring, and for other reasons. 
Sometimes the devotees part with locks, or the entire hair 
of the head, and are shaved by barbers on the spot. In 
many families, offerings of money for the god are stored in 
boxes called undi, and eventually presented at the shrine. 
On the way leading up the hill, knots may be seen tied in 
the leaves of young date-palms. This is the work of 
virgins, who, by so doing, hope to ensure the tying of the 
marriage tali on their necks. Men cause their names to be 
cut in the rocks on the wayside, or on the stones, with 
which the path leading to the temple is paved, in the belief 
that good luck will follow, if dust from the feet of some 
pious man falls on it. The summit of the hill, which is 
2,500 feet high, is reached by a flight of stone steps. A 
paved road leads thence to Tirumala. The affairs of 
the temple are presided over b)- two religious heads, 



called J Iyengars, and a Mahant, or secular head and 

TiRUVANNAMALAI (17,069), in the South Arcot district. 
At the foot of Tiruvannamala (the holy fire hill) is a 
celebrated temple. At one of its festivals a huge beacon 
is lighted in memory of a legend connected with Siva and 
Parvati, and the appearance of the former on the hill as a 
pillar of fire. 

Tranquebar (13,142), on the coast of the Tanjore 
district, formerly a Danish settlement. The town is entered 
by a gateway, bearing the monogram of the King of 
Denmark, and date 1792. The present English church 
was built by the Danes in 1620, and the New Jerusalem 
church by the Danish missionary Ziegenbalg in 17 17. The 
former contains various Danish relics, such as a silver 
communion service, and a painting of the Last Supper. 

Trichinopoly (104,721). The administrative head- 
quarters of the Trichinopoly district, situated on the right 
bank of the Cauvery river. The town is celebrated for the 
rock, rising to a height of 273 feet, which is ascended by a 
flight of stone steps. The rock temple is dedicated to 
Mathubuthesvara or Tayumanavar. A representation of 
the rock is sculptured on the monument in Westminster 
Abbey to Stringer Lawrence, who defeated the French at 
the battle of the Golden Rock in 1753. At the foot of the 
rock is the teppakulam tank, which, as well as the rock, is 
illuminated on great occasions. 

Trichur (15,585) in the Cochin State, the origin of 
which is, by tradition, attributed to Parasu Rama. The 
temple of Vadakunnathan, reputed to be the oldest temple 
on the west coast, is situated on an eminence, and sur- 
rounded by a high wall. There are several maths, where 
Nambutiri Brahmans are fed, and instructed in the Vedas. 
The town also possesses a palace, and two Syrian Christian 


. JM 











Trivandrum (57,882), the capital of the Travancore 
State, and residence of the Maharaja, whose palace, as well 
as the Padnianabhasvvami temple, is situated within the 
town. The buildings include the British Residency, the 
Museum, designed by Mr Chisholm on the lines of Mala- 
yalam architecture, and situated in the public gardens, the 
Maharaja's college, and the observatory. The Maharaja's 
Nayar Brigade is quartered in the town. 

TUTICORIN (28,048). The southern terminus of the 
South India railway in Tinnevelly, and port of embarkation 
for Ceylon. It is famous for its pearl-fisheries, and is an 
important centre of the cotton industry. About 30 j^er 
cent, of the population are Paravas, whose forefathers were 
converted en masse to the Roman Catholic religion by 
Michael Vaz, Vicar-General of the Bishop of Goa, and 
Francis Xavier, in the sixteenth century. 

Udiamperur (5,327) in Travancore, where Alexis de 
Menezes, Roman Catholic Archbishop of Goa, held, in 
1599, the celebrated synod of Diamper, which had an im- 
portant bearing on the future of the Roman Catholic and 
Syrian churches. Menezes is said, like a second Omar, to 
have had all the books written in the Syrian or Chalda^an 
language, which he could collect, committed to the flames, 
not only at the synod, but during his subsequent visitation 
of the Syrian churches. 

Vellore (43,537) in the North Arcot district, cele- 
brated for its temple and fort. In 1806, a mutiu}- broke out 
among the native troops, with the object of massacring the 
Europeans, and seizing the fort in the name of the sons of 
Tipu Sultan, who had been detained at Vellore since their 
father's death in 1799. The exciting cause of discontent 
is said to have been the introduction of a new leather head- 
gear bearing a faint resemblance to a European topi (hat), 
and of a new turnscrew in the shape of a cross, which was 
ordered to be worn next the heart. 









ViNUKONDA (7,266) in the Guntur district, situated 
under the Vinukonda hill. The name, meaning hill of 
hearing-, is connected with a tradition that it was here that 
Rama heard the news of the abduction of his wife Sita. 

ViZAGAPATAM (40,892). A sea-port town, and the 
administrative head-quarters of the V^izagapatam district, 
situated in the bay formed by the headland called Dolphin's 
Nose. Many of the officials live at the delightful suburb 
of Waltair, to the north of the town. 

ViZIANAGRAM (37,270) in the Vizagapatam district. 
The name is a corruption of Vijaya-nagaram (city of 
victory), and is derived from Viziarama Razu, who founded 
it. The palace of the Raja of Vizianagram is situated 
within the fort, and in front of it are statues of the last 
Maharaja and his father. 

Wellington (4,793). A military cantonment and 
convalescent depot on the Nllgiri hills, 6,100 feet above 
the sea. It was originally called Jakatala after a Badaga 
village in the neighbourhood, but was named Wellington, 
after the first Duke, by Sir Charles Trevelyan, Governor of 
Madras, in i860. It is garrisoned by British Infantry. 
The race-course is situated in a hollow, within an amphi- 
theatre of wooded hills, below the cantonment. 

Whitefield (968), a settlement in Mysore for Eura- 
sians and Anglo-Indians, named after Mr D. S. White, the 
founder of the Eurasian and Anglo-Indian Association. 
The colonists are mainly occupied in the cultivation of 
fruit, vegetables, and food-grains, rearing fowls, etc. 

Yekcaud (7,787), a corruption of Er-kad, meaning 
lake-wood. A hill-station in the Salem district, which 
finds favour as a quiet health-resort in the hot weather. 



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Bruce (J.), Annals of the Honorable East India Company, 3 vols, 

Buckland (C. E.), Dictionary of Indian Biography, 1906. 
Caldwell (R.), Comparative Grammar of the Dravidian or South 

Indian Family of Languages, 1875. 

Census Reports, Madras, Mysore, etc. 
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Crooke (W.), The Rude Stone Monuments of India [Proc. Cotteswold 
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The Tribes and Castes of the North-western Provinces and 
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Rubber Exhibition, Ofificial Guide, 191 1. 

Statistical Abstract relating to British India, 1910. 

Statistical Atlas of India, 2nd ed., 1895. 

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Abkari (excise) revenue iiq 
Adam's Bridge 8, 9, 12, ,^2, 5.^, 271 
Aditanallur, prehistoric burial place 

Adoni 209, 245 
Agastya ^Iaharshi, sage 18 
Agastyamalai 18, 30 
Agencies, definition 10 
Aix-la-Chapelle, treaty 174 
Albuquerque 167 

Algse, calcareous {Lithotha»iiiiuiii) 34 
Alleppey 37 ; mud-banks 37, 39 
Aluminium 65, 66 ; manufactures 212 
Alwaye 245 
Amaravati, Buddhist stupa 2-;, 80, 

Amethyst 82 
Amiens, treaty 180 
Amindivi islands 31 
Anaimalai hills 18 
Anaimudi peak 18 
Anantapur 245 
Andhra coins 150 
Anicut 204 
Animism 127 
Anjengo 183 
Ant-eater, scaly 91 
Antelope 90 
Aquamarine 59, 67 
Arabian sea, definition 3-4 
Archaean rocks 54-9, 61, 62 
Arcot 246; siege 174 
Arcot, Prince of 181 
Areca nut 119, 197 
Armagon, history 169 
Arni, muslin 227 
Arrack 119 
Asbestos 67 

Aska, sugar factory 210 
Asoka 154, 155 ; rock-cut edicts 

Atoll, 31 

Attapadi valley 30 
Aurangzib, firman 171, 172 

Australian trees, introduced 113, 114, 

Ayyampet, rugs 227 
Azariah, Rev. V. S. 244 

Baba Buden hills 22, 26 

Backwaters, west coast 35, 39, 41, 
187, 190 

Badaga 15, 17, 122, 129, 140-1, 196, 
213, 214 

Badger 87 

Baillie, Colonel 177, 251, 272 

Baird, David 178 

Bamboo 104, 109, iii 

Bandicoot 88 

Bangalore 209, 213, 246-7; jail car- 
pets 227 

Banganapalle State 5, 184 

Barley 213 

Basel Mission 210 

Batrachians 95 

Bats 87 

Bauxite 65, 69 

Beans 196 

Bears 87 

Beche-de-mer 35, 224 

Beddome, R. H. 243 

Beer 213 

Bees 100 

Beetles 101-2 

Bellary 209, 247 

Belur, temple 22, 247 

Benares, pilgrims 25 

Beryl 59, 67 

Beschi 239 

Betel {Piper Beile), cultivation 197 

Betel leaf 119 

Betel-nut [Areca Catechu) 119 

Betel-nut palm 114 

Bey pore river 23 

Bezvsada 206, 247 

Bhattiprolu, Buddhist stupa 147-8 

Bhavani river 30, 96 

Biligirirangan hills 22 



Bimlipatam 37, 247 

Birds, migratory 93; orders 92-3 

Bis-cobra 95 

"Bison" (gaur) 91; horn-ware 231 

Bison hills 109 

Bissoyi 271 

Blacklead 73 

Black town 129, 208, 257, 26S 

Blanford, H. F. 244 

Blood-sucker 95 

Bobbin 247; Maharaja 182 

Boer prisoners 247 

Boomerang 125 

Botanical regions ioS-13 

Botanists, distinguished 242-3 

Bourdonnais, see Mahe 

Boy (Boi) 185-6 

Brahmagiri hills 28 

Braiiman 130, 131-3; I>ikshitar 249; 

Nambutiri 32, 131, 276; Smarta 

Breweries 213 
Brinjal 196 

Brown, Charles Philip 24 1 
Buchanan, Claudius 241 
Buchanan -Hamilton, Francis 235, 

242, 243 
Buckingham canal 35, 190 
Buckingham, Duke of 190, 266 
Buddha, relics 148 
Huddhist religious buildings 154-5, 

Buddhist stupa, Amaravali 23, So, 

148-50 ; Bhattiprolu 147-8 
Bugs 102 

Burmese convicts 231 
Burnell, Arthur Coke 241 
Bussy 176, 249 
Butterflies 99-100 

Cabral 167 

Caldwell, Robert 241 

Calicut 7, 37, 167, 216, 249 

Calimere Point 9, no 

Calingapatam 11, 37, 249 

Camoens 235 

Campbell, Sir Archibald 237 

Canarese language 122 

Cannanore 37, 219, 249; jail carving 

2 30-[ 

Canning, Countess 251 
Cape Comorin 8, 17 
Cardamom hills 18 
Carnatic, definition 1 2 
Carnatic Nawabs 12, 172, 173, 174, 
176, 180, 181, 237, 246; coins 176 

Carnivora 86-7 

Carpet manufacture 227 

Cashew nut 199 

Caste 134-5; origin of the word 131 

Casuarina 106 

Catamaran 220-2 

Cats 86 

Cauvery falls 28; electric power 73 

Cauvery river 28, 206, 272 

Ceded Districts 5, 180 

Cereals 195 

Chaitanya 131, 239 

"Chalk hdls" 68, 75 

Chalukyan architecture 155, 162; 

coins 223 
Chamreleon 95 
Chaniundi hill 79, 264 
Chanda Sahib 173, 174, 239 
Chandernagore i, 184 
Chandragiri, palace 164 
Chank fishery 223 
Charnock, Job 59 
Charnockite rocks 57-9 
Cheeta 86 

Ciiemlirambakam tank 200 
Chenchu 21 
Cheroot 211 

Cheruman, conversion 130 
Chicacole, muslin 227 
Chidambaram 249-50; temple 161 
Chilka lake 187, 193 
Chilli 196 
Chinese coins 3 
Chinese convict settlers 218 
Chingleput 250 
Chinnapatanam 3 
Chittar river 31 
Chittoor 250 
Cholam 195 

Christianity, conversion 130 
Chrome tanning 213 
Chromite 68-9 
Chunam 80, 197 
Chunam frog 95 
Cicada 102 
Cigarettes 2 1 1 

Cinchona, cultivation 15, 216-17 
Cire perdue 230 
Civet-cat 86 
Clay 80, 264 

Clive, Robert i, 11. 174, 176, 256 
Coal 62, 63 
Cobra 94 

Cocanada 37, 41, 211, 227, 250 
Cochin 37, 43, 250; history 167, 171, 

I 78; Jews 136 



Cochin liver 35, 41 
Cochin State 4; administration 184; 
coinage 4; rul)l)er cultivation 218 
Cockr(jach 97 
Coconut, carving 230-1; "milk" 

117 ; oil 116 
Coconut palm 31, 114; pests 32; 

wood 117 
Coecilians 95 

Coffee, blossom showers 46 ; cultiva- 
tion 15, 17, 214-16; green bug 
102; leaf disease 214, 216 
CofTer-fish {Os/i-acion), legend 33 
Coimbatore 209, 216, 250 
Coir fibre 114 
Colair lake 25 
Colbert 171 
Coleroon river 30, 206 
Collector 182, 183 
Competition Wallah 181 
Condore, battle 176 
Conjeeveram 251 
Coonoor 251 
Coonoor ghat 13 
Coorg 6; Chief Commissioner 183; 

coffee planting 214, 215 
Coorgs 6, 122 
Coote, Eyre 176, 177 
Cooum river 201, 257 
Copper 61, 69 
Coppersmith (barbet) 93 
Coracle 26-7 

Coral reefs 31-2, 34, 35 

Cordite factory 214 

Cornwallis, Marquis 178, 180, 237, 
259, 261 

Coromandel coast, definition 11 

Corrie, Daniel 241 

Corundum 59, 69, 82 

Cotton, cultivation 208; mills 209; 
presses 208-9 

Cotton soil, black 108, 109, 20S 

Courtallum klls 31 

Cranganore 36 

Cranganore river 35, 39 

Cretaceous rocks and lossils, 63-5 

Crocodiles 94-5 

Crops, cultivated 195-9 

Crow 20, 93 

Crystalline rocks 54, 79-80 

Cubbon, Sir Mark 247 

Cuddalore 27, 37, 252 

CuJdapah 252 

Cumbum tank 200 

Custard-apple 199 

Cyclones 49-53 

d'Ache, Comte 176 

Dalhousie, Earl of 186, 255, 272 

Dalton, John 174 

Danish coins 169, 177 

Darasaram, temple 158 

Darya Bahatlurgarh island 36 

Date-sugar palm 114 

Day, Francis, founder of Fort St 

George 2, 169 
Day, Francis, naturalist 243 
Deccan, definition 10 
Deer 90 

Delhi Sultans, coins 1 2 ; Viceroys 1 2 
Delly, mount 167 
Deltaic canals 205 
Depressed classes 129 
Deva-dasis (dancing-girls) 201 
Dhal 195 

Dharwar rocks 59-61, 69 
Diamond 70-1, 273 
Dikshitar Brahman 249 
Dindigul 252 ; cheroot manufacture 


Divi Point 25 

Dodabetta 15, 216 

Dolmens 140-3 

Dolphin's Nose 40, 280 

Dovvlaishwaram 205 

Draper, Elizabeth ("Sterne's Eliza") 

Dravidian architecture 155, 158-02 

Dravidian languages 120-3, '"^5 

Dravidians 124-5 

Drugs 13, 57, 252 

Dubois, Abbe 241 

Dugarazpatnam, history 169 

Dugong 91 

Dupleix 173, 174, 268 

Dusserah festival 5, 264, 270 

Dust storms 47 

Dutch coins 168 

Dutch East India Company 168 

Dutch, history 168, 171, 172, 178, 

250, 270 
Dyes, aniline 211; vegetable 211 

East India Company 167, 172-3, 181 ; 

coinage 173, 275 
Ebony 107 ; carving 231 
Economic plants, introduced 195 
Elephant 18, 85, 88 ; keddah 88 
Elephantiasis loi, 271 
Elizabeth, Queen, coins i('8 
Ellore, carpet manufacture 227 
Emigration 7, 41 
Ernakulam. 187, 250 



Erramala hills 2 i 

Fasli year 194 

Fire by friction 127 

Fish-curins^ 220 

Fish insect 97 

Fish-maws 219 

Fish oil 219-20 

Fish, sacred 30 

Fishery Department 225 

Fishes 95-7 

Flying-fox 87 

Food -grains 195-6 

Fort Defiance (Madura) 263 

Fort St David 172, 176, 252 

Fort St George i, 169, 171, 174, 

Foxcroft, George 237 
Fraserpet 2 b 

Freemasonry 10, 12, 237 
French coins 7, 173 
French Company 171, 172 
French possessions 6-7 
Frogs 95 
Frost 46 
Fruits, cultivated 197-200 

Gandikota fort 27 

Gangaikonda Cholapuram, temple 1 58 

Ganges, legends 24, 27, 256 

Gell, Bishop 251 

Gentoo 171 

Geologists, distinguished 243-4 

Gerso|)pa falls 23 

Ghat, meaning of word 13 

Ghats, eastern 13, 20-22; vegetation 

Ghats, western 13, 17-20, 189; vege- 
tation 104-5 

Ghi 213 

Gingee 246, 252, 268 

Gingelly oil 197 

Ginger 197 

Gneiss 57, 62 

Godavari river 24, 35, 190, 205 

Golconda, kings 70, 169 

Gold-fields 61, 71-3 

Gold-washers 73 

Golden Firman 169 

Golden Rock, battle 174, 276 

Gomatesvara, colossal stone figure 153 

Gondi language 123 

Gondwana geological foimatioii 62-3 

Gondwanaland 63 

Gooty 253 

Gopalpur 37, 253 

Gourami 97 

(iram 195 

Grama Devata (village dcilies) 135-6 

Granite 57, 59 

Grant Duff, Sir Mountstuart 18, 258 

Graphite 73 

(iround-nut 197 

Gudigar wood-carvers 230 

Guntur 253 

Gurpur river 23, 263 

Hagari river 26 

Ilaidar Ali 36, 50, 177, 239, 247, 

Halebid 162, 253 
Hamadryad 94 

Hamilton, see Buchanan- Hamilton 
Hampi (Vijayanagar) 2C1, 253 
Hare island 35 
Harris, General (Lord Harris) 180, 

Hastings, Warren 177 
Heber, Reginald 241 
High Range, Travancore 18 
Hindu death rites, sacred batli 28 
Hindu idols for settlers in Burma 43 
Hinduism 130 
Hindustani language 124 
Hobart, Lord 23S 
Hobson-Jobson 242 
Holeyas, privileges 130 
Hook-swinging 129 
Hope island ^^ 
Hosur, remount depot 253 
Hulikal Drug 13 
Husain Dost Kiian 173 

" Ibex" (wild goat) 91 

Ibn Batuta 11, 234 

" Iguana " 95 

Inam land 195 

Intlian corn 195 

Indigo 212 

Indo-Saracenic Architecture 164 

Infanticide 127-8 

Insectivora 87 

Insects 97-102; mimicry 97, 100; 

season dimorphism 99 
Iron smelting 74-5 
Irrigation worl<s 200-7 
Irula 17, 127, 141 
Ivory carving 731 

Jackal 87, 211 
Jack fruit 199 
Jaggery 119, 210 



Jain 87, 133, 153, 158, i6r, 162, 

Jangada, rock-cut edicts of Asoka 

Japanese, sericulture in Mysore 100 
Javadi hills 22 
Jerdon, T. C. 243 
Jews, Cochin 136, 250 
Jeypore hills 2 1 
Jeypore Rajas 133 
Ju'tka 185 

Kabbani river 28 

Kadir, 100, 125-7 

Kalahasti 227, 255 

Kalinga kingdom ri 

Kalrayan hills 22, 28 

Kalugumalai, temple 156-7 

Kambu 195 

Kanniyambal, goddess 8 

Kaolin 80 

Karikal 7, 37, ^i, 184 

Karkal, colossal stone figure 153 ; 

wood-carving 231 
Karnam [83 
Karteri falls 214 
Kerala 9-10, 271 
Kettle Bottom 21 
Kistna river 25, 190, 206 
Kistvaens 1 39-40 
Kites 92 
Kittul fibre ir4 
Kling r i 

Kodagu or Coorg language 122 
Kodaikanal 20, 59, 189, 255 
Koel (cuckoo) 93 
Koh-i-nur diamond 70-1 
Kolachel 37 
Kolar gold-fields 71-3; water supply 

Kolarian languages 123 
KoUaimalai hills 22, 28 
KoUam era 270 
Komati 134 
Kondh 21, 123, 127, 128, 134, 196, 

230, 271 
Konkani language 123 
Kopra 116 

Korava language 124 
Kota 15, 17, 122, 196, 213, 255 
Kotagiri 255 
Kottayam 255 
Kshatriya 13--1, i33~4 
Kudremukh 18 

Kumari (shifting) cultivation 196 
Kumbakonam 25, 189, 255-6 

Kundah range 15 

Kurnool 256 

Kuruba, dolmen-like graves 14 1-2 

Kurumba 17, 73, 122, 125, 126, 

129, 141 
Kurunibalur, metal-ware 230 
Kuruvatti, temple 162 
Kuttalanathaswami temple 31 

Laccadive islands 31-2 ; islanders 32, 

Lace manufacture 266 
Lacquer ware 231 
Lally, Thomas Arthur 176, 177 
Lambadi, language 124 
Lapidary work 82 
Laterite 65-6, 80, 109, 110 
Lawrence, Stringer 174, 176, 276 
Lawyers, distinguished 241-2 
Leather workers 213 
Leopard 86 
Lime fruit 197 
Limestone 6t, 80 
Linga 133, 249, 251, 255 
Lingayats 133 
Lithographic stones 80 
Lizards 95 
I^ocust 97-8 
Long-shore winds 46 
Lunka (island) 24, 25; tobacco 211 

Ma'bar i r 

Madanapalle 256 

Madhva Acharya 131, 239 

Madras city 256-61 ; cyclones 49- 

50, 53; harbour 40; history 169, 

171, 172, 174, 176; Thousand 

Lights 237 ; Victoria Memorial 

Hall 234 
Madras, etymology i 
Madras "handkerchiefs" 225-6 
Madras Presidency, administrati(jn 

1 8 1-3 ; divisions 9 
Madura 164, 209, 227, 230, 261 ; 

temple 133, 161 
Magnesite 68, 75 
Mahabalipuram (Seven Pagodas) 

temples and rock carvings, 150-3, 

Mahamakam festival, 25, 189, 256 
Mahanadi river 205 
Mahant 276 
Mahe 7, 173, 184 
Mahe de la Bourdonnais 7, 49, 173, 

174, 268 
Mahendragiri peak 20 



Mahseer 30, 96 

Maize 195 

Mala Arraiyan, cromlechs 141 

.Mala Vedar 125 

Malabar, rubber cultivation 218 

Malappuram 263 

Malayalam language 122 

Malayali hill tribe 22 

Malcolm, Sir John 264 

Maliahs 20, 21, 100 

Malleson, George Bruce 235 

Malpe 36, 220 

Mammals 85-91 

Manaar, gulf 8 ; pearl and chank 

fisheries 222-3 
Manaar, island 8, 32 
Mandasa, lacquer ware 231 
Mangalore 37, 216, 263; tiles 80 
Manganese mining 75-6 
Mango 199, 250 ; showers, 46 ; 

weevil, 10 r 
Mangrove 104, 109 
Mappilla 32, 136, 220, 263 
Maratha Carnatic 1 2 
Marathas, history 172, 173, 174, 274 
Marathas, Sandur 5 
Marathi language 123 
Marco Polo 234 
Maritime trade, statistics 43 
iSIartin, Claude 177 
Martin, Francois 172 
Masula boat 39-40 
Masulipatam 7, 37, 91, 227, 263; 

cyclone 50-3, 235 ; history 169, 

172, 174, 176 
Mats 232 

Mayne, John Dawson 242 
Medows, General William 237 
Melkote 130, 263 
Melon 199 
Mercara 6, 264 
Meriah sacrifice 21, 127, 271 
Metal-ware 228-30 
Meteorites 84-5 
Mettupalaiyam 30, 187 
Mica 59, 77-8 
Miller, Rev. William 261 
Mimicry, insect 97, 100 
Mineral production, statistics 82-3 
Minicoy 31 

Missionaries, distinguished 239 
Mofussil I 

Moghul architecture 164 
Moghul Carnatic 12, 172 
Moghuls, coins 3, 172, 245, 253, 


Mohammed Yusuf 237 

Monazite 78 

Monkeys 86 

Monsoon 45 ; north-east 49 ; south- 
west 47 

Morari Rao 174, 253 

Mosquito loi 

Moths 99-100 

Mount Stuart 18 

Moyar river 30 

Mud-banks, west coast 37, 39 

Mudabidri, Jains 87, 162 

Muhammadans 136 

Mukarti peak 15, 30 

Mulainagiri 22 

Mulki rocks 36 

Munda languages 123 

Mungoose 32, 86 

Munro, Sir Hector 177, 251 

Munro, Sir Thomas 153, 238, 245, 
253> 256, 258, 261, 268 

Musiris 36 

Musk-rat 87 

Mutiny 259 ; Vellore 278 

Mutusawmy Aiyar, Sir T. 242, 261 

Mysore Commission 180 

Mysore ditch 30 

Mysore State 5-6 ; administration 
183, 184; coins 6, 177; gold- 
fields 71-3 ; history 177, 178, 
180; manganese 75; planting in- 
dustry 214, 215, 218 

Mysore town 264 

Naduvatam, cinchona factory is, 216, 

Nagaram island 25, 206 
Nagari hills 21 
Nagari Nose 21 
Nagercoil 266 
Nallamalai hills 21 
Nambutiri Brahman 32, 131, 276 
Nandi (sacred bull), colossal statue 

158, 266, 274 
Nandidrug 22, 57 
Nandyal, lacquer ware 232 
Nanjangud 266 
Narakkal mud-banks 37, 39 
NattukOttai Chetti 249 
Nayadis, conversion 130 
Negapatam 37, 41, 171 
Neill, General 261 
Nelliampathis 18 
Nellikuppam, sugar factory 210 
Nellore 266 
Nellore, mica mines 77-8 




Neolithic implements 138-9 

Netravati river 23, 80, 263 

Newbold, J. T. 244 

Nilgiri hills 13-17, 59 ; breweries 
213; cordite factory 214; planting 
industry 216, 218; prehistoric re- 
mains 140, 143-!;; railway 187 

Nizam patam 169 

Nobili, Robert de 239 

Norite 80 

Northern Circars, acquisition 176; 
definition lo-ii 

Nosam, leather ware 232 

Observatory 255, 259 
Odde (navvies) 201 
Oil-seeds 197 
Ootacamund 15, 59, 266 
Oriya language 120-2 
Orlofi" diamond 273 
Orme, Robert 235 
Ouchterlony valley 15 
Owl 32 

Pachaimalai hills 22, 27 

Paddy- bird 92 

Padmanabham, battle 178 

Paikara river 30 

Pakieolithic implements 138 

Palamcottah 268 

Palanquin 185 

Palar river 27, 204 

Palempore 227, 263 

Palghat gap 17, 187 

Palghat, mats 234 

Paliyan 20, 125 

Palkonda hills 21 

Palk's Bay 9 

Palk's Straits 9 

Pallava dynasty 151, 156 

Palm weevil loi 

Palmaner 268 

Palmyra palm 1 1 4 

Palni hills 18-20, 30 

Palni shrine 18 

Pamban 33, 34, 37 

Pamban island 32-5, 40-1 

Pamban pass 32, 33, 35, 41 

Pan-supari 1 1 9 

Panchayat 183 

Pandavas 139, 140 

Pandu kuli (kistvaens) 139-40 

Pandyan coins 223 

Pangolin 91 

Paniyan 17, 125, 127 

Papanasam falls 30 


Papaya 199 

Paraiyans, privileges 129-30 

Parasu Rama, legends 10, 141, 276 

Parava 223, 278 

Parlakimedi 187 ; mats 234 

Parnallee meteorite 85 

Pasteur Institute 252 

Patniili language 123 

Pattikonda 268 

Pearl fisheries 222-3 

Peat bogs 59, 113 

Pegmatite granite 59 

Penner river 27 

Pepper, cultivation 17, [96 

Periyar project 30, 203 

Periyar river 24, 36, 131, 203, 

Persian wheel 201 
Perumal hill 
Picota 201 
Pigot, Lord 237, 258 
Pirmed 268; tea cultivation 216 
Pirmed hills 18 
Pith, manufactures 232 
Pitt diamond 71 
Pitt, Thomas 71 

Plague disseminated by rat-flea 88 
Plantain (banana) 199 
Plumbago 73 
Pogson, Norman 244 
Poligar 5, no 
Pomelo 197 
Pondicherry 7, 37, 184, 268; history 

172, 173, 174, 176, 178, 180 
Pongal festival 46 
Pongal showers 46 
Ponnaiyar river 27, 252 
Ponnani river 23 
Porcupine 87, 231 
Porphyry 79-80 
Porpoises 91 
Porto Novo 270 
Portuguese coins 168 
Portuguese, history 166, 167, 168, 171, 

250, 258, 259, 270 
Potato, sweet 196 
Pre-Dravidians 125-7 
Prendergast, Sir Harry 237 
Presidency, origin of name i 
Pudukkottai 270 
Pudukkottai State 4 ; administration 

184 ; coins 5 
Pulicat 168, 178, 270 
Pulicat lake 193 
Pulses 195 
Pumice from Krakatoa 34 



Pumping and Boring Department 

I'urana geological formations 62 
Purnaiya, Regent of Mysore 180, 272 
I'ushkaram festival 25 
I'ushpagiri 22 
Python 94 

Quilon 37, 270 

Quinine, manufacture 218 

Ragi 195 

Railways, Bengal-Nagpur 187 ; Great 
India Peninsula 186 ; Madras and 
South Mahratta 186-7 ; Nilgiri 
187 ; Partakimedi 187 ; Shoranur- 
Cochin 187 ; South Indian 187-90 

Rainfall, statistics 47, 49, 52 

Rajahmundry 25, 271 

Rama, legends 8-9, 24, 153, 271, 
272-3) 280 

Ramandrug 5 ; manganese 75 

Ramanuja 130, 131, 238, 263, 264, 

Ramesvaram 33, 161, 224 

Ramnad 271 

Rampa rebellion 21 

Rangaswami pillar i ^ 

Rat 32, 87-8 

Rat -flea and plague 88 

Rat-snake 32 

Rattan 1 1 4 

Ravi Varma 244 

Red Hills tank 201 

Red Sanders tree 108, 113 

Reformatory school 250 

Regent diamond 71 

Regur 208 

Religion, statistics 137 

Remount depot 253 

Rheede, Hendrik van 242 

Rice 195 

Richelieu, Cardinal 171 

Roberts, Earl 236 

Rodents 87 

Roman coins 67, 263 

Rosewood 105 ; carving 231 

Roxburgh, William 243-4 

Rubber, cultivation 218 

Rumbold, Sir Thomas 238 

Ruminants 90 

Rushikulya river 193, 20,^ 

Russellkonda 271 

Ryat 193 

Ryatwari land revenue system 194 

Ryswick, treaty 172 

Sacramento shoal 25 

Sacrifice rock 36 

Sago palm 114; spirit distilled 119 

St Mary's island 36 

St Thomas 259, 271 

St Thomas' Mount 59, 271 

Sal tree 108, 109, 113 

Salem 209, 272 

Saltpetre, manufacture 79 

Samalkot, sugar-cane station 210 

Samarskite 79 

Sandalwood loS, no, 113; carving 
230- 231 

Sandstone 61, 62, 80 

Sandur State 5, 184, manganese 75 

Sankara Acharya 131, 238, 245, 272 

Sankaridrug 57 

"Sardines" 219-20 

Saurashtra 123 

Saw-fish 96 

Schist 57, 62 

Schwartz 239 

Sea fisheries, statistics 220 

Sea-snakes 94 

Seaports, principal 37 

Seasons 44-53 

Sedimentary rocks 54 

Sericulture 100 

Seringapatam 164, 272 ; history, 178, 
180, 256 

Servile classes, privileges 129-30 

Setupati, coins 271 

Seven Pagodas, see Mahabalipuram 

Seven, sacred number 24, 271 

Shale 61, 62 

Shanar 117 

Shanbog 183 

Shark-charmer 223 

Sharks 95-6 ; fins 219 

Shembaganur, Jesuit college 255 

Sheshadri Aiyar, Sir 244 

Shevaroy hills 22, 59 ; rubber culti- 
vation 218 

Shiyali, mats 234 

Shola 106, 113 

Sholingur, battle 177 

Shoranur 187 

Silk-moths 100 

Silpa Sastras 161 

Singarazu peak 20 

Sivaganga, metal-ware 230 

Sivaratri festival 245, 255 

Sivasamudram island, 28 

Snakes 94 

Soils, classification 194 

Somnathpur, temple 162, 272 



Sonnerat 235, 242 

-Squirrels 87; legends 8-9, 117 

Sradh ceremony 20, 131-2 

Sravana Belgola 133, 161, 272 ; 

colossal stone figure 153 
Sriharikota island 35, 193 
Srimushnam temple festival 28 
Sringeri 272 
Srirangam 161, 273 
Srirangam island 30, 176, 206, 273 
Srisailam shrine 21 
Steatite 59, 79 
Stocks, confinement in 183 
Stone cii"cles 143-5 
Sudra 130-1 
Sugar cane 210-11 
Suruli river 203 
Swiftlet, edible-nest 36 
Sword-fish 96 
Syrian Christians 137, 168, 245, 255, 

276, 278 

Tahsildar 183 

Talikota, battle 167 

Taluk 183 

Tambraparni river 30 

Tamil language 120 

Tangasseri 1 83 

Tanjore 164, 227, 228-30, 274 ; temple 

158, 166 
Tanks 200-1 
Tasar silk-moth 100 
Tavernier 27, 70, 235 
Tea, cultivation 17, 216 
Teak 108, no, 113 
Tellicherry 37, 275 
Telugu language 1 20, 122 
Temperature, statistics 45 
Theosophical Society 257 
Thieves' slang 124 
Tinnevelly 275 
Tinnevelly mats 232, 234 
Tipu Sultan 177, 178-9, 185, 261, 

264, 272, 278 
Tinichendur 275 
Tirumala 275 
Tirumala hill 21 
Tirumala Nayak 164, 239, 261 
Tirupati 21, 230, 275 
Tiruvallavar 238 
Tiravalur, temple festival 129 
Tiruvannamalai 276 
Tobacco 211 
Toda 15, 17, 1 1 1-12, 122-3, 127-9, 

145, 266 
Toddy 119 

Toddy-cat 86 

Toddy-drawing castes 117 

Tondaimandalam 4-5 

Tondiman 5 

Tonga 187 

Tooth-chipping 126 

Totemism 135 

Tranquebar 276; history 169, 180, 

Travancore State 3-4 ; administration 
184; coins 4, 223; planting in- 
dustry 214, 216, 218 ; wood carving 

Travellers, early 234-5 

Trepang 224 

Trichinopoly 276; history 173, 174; 
pith carving 232 

Trichur 276 

Trivandrum 4, 278; ivory carving 

Trout 97 

Tulabharam ceremony of weighing 
against gold 4, 231 

Tulu language 122 

Tungabhadra river 26, 253, 256 

Turmeric 197 

Turtles 94 

Tuticorin 37, 41, 43, 178, 209, 278; 
pearl and chank fisheries 222-3 

Udiamperur 278 

Ungulata (hoofed animals) 88 

Uppara salt-workers 79 

Vaigai river 30, 203, 263 

Vaisya 130-1, 134 

VallaVjhacharya 239 

Varkala cliffs 190 

Vasco da Gama 36, 167, 201 

Vegetables, cultivated 196 

Vellar river 27 

Vellore 278 ; jail carpets 227 ; temple 

Vembadi shola hill 20 
Versailles, treaty 178 
Vijayanagar, see Hampi 
Vijayanagar, kingdom 161, 167, 169, 

171, 252, 253 
Vine cultivation 199-200 
Vinukonda 280 
Viranam tank 200 
Vizagapatam 37, 40, 231, 280; history 

176, 178 
Vizianagram 280; manganese 75 
Vows, Hindu 275 
Vypeen island 35, 250 



Walajali, Nawab 176, 258 

Waler horses 2^^ 

Wandiwash, battle 176; mats 234 

Wasps 1 00 

Weather, types 44 

Weaving, factory 209-10; hand-loom 

Weevils loi 

Wellesley, Arthur (Duke of Welling- 
ton) 180, 259, 264, 280 

Wellesley, Marquis 272 

West coast, definition 9 

Whales 91 

"White-ant" 91, 98-9, 153 

Whitefield 280 

White town 256, 268 

Wight, Robert 243 

Wilks, Mark 235, 264 

Wootz steel 74 

Wynaad 17; coffee cultivation 214 

Xavier, Francis 239, 278 

Yale, Elihu 172, 237, 259 

Vanadi 35 

Vanam 7, 184 

X'enur, colossal stone figure 153 

^'erava 122, 125 

Vercaud 22, 59, 187, 280 

Zamindari land revenue system 194 
Ziegenbalg 239, 276 
Zoo-geographical areas 85, 97 
Zoologists, distinguished 243 
Zu-1-Fikar Khan 172 



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